Mike Tana Elected

New President for the PSA

BY Alan Tristram
Delegates at the national conference of the Public Service Association have elected senior biosecurity advisor Mike Tana as their new President.Mike Tana lives at Titahi Bay and is a married man with four children. His work is based in Wellington, where he is a senior biosecurity advisor in the Ministry for Primary Industries.  He replaces Christchurch scientist Paula Scholes who has led the union for the past four years.The PSA represents 58,000 members across the public and states sectors, community public services, local government and district health boards.

Mike joined the PSA in 2003 and became a workplace delegate at what was the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.  He quickly moved into leadership roles within the union’s public sector and within the PSA Runanga representing Maori members.

Mike is of Ngati Whatua and Ngapuhi heritage.  He is a committed public servant who is proud of the work the PSA does in promoting fair pay and conditions for its members and building strong and safe workplaces.

However he is concerned about the on-going cuts in the public sector and their impact on services and working conditions.

“The heart and lungs are slowly being ripped out of the public service and unless the PSA continues to raise the issues along with fair and robust solutions we will see more and more gaps exposed in our public services as our capacity continues to be undermined.  We must continue to protect the services that New Zealanders value and the New Zealanders who provide these essential services,” he says.

“The PSA is the respected and legitimate voice for fair and reasonable conditions during this time of real uncertainty and change in the public service.  The Deputy Prime Minister Bill English admitted this in his speech to the PSA Congress on Tuesday, recognising the role of the public service in the Christchurch earthquake recovery and acknowledging the PSA’s work in developing high performing workplaces within the state sector. I want to keep these and other strong PSA initiatives at the forefront of public and government thinking.”