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Tuesday 30 May 2017

Jobs to go as NZAF struggles with funding freeze

Posted in: New Zealand Daily News
By Daily News staff - 6th March 2017

Jobs are to disappear at the NZ AIDS Foundation as it struggles to reverse the surging annual rate of HIV infections amongst gay and bi men, in the face of almost static government funding for six years.


The NZAF has today advised staff of its final decisions on reducing expenses which comes at it has run up a debt of $500,000 over the past three years in an attempt to keep its prevention programmes and services running.

Executive Director Jason Myers says a number of roles across the organisation are to disappear and “options for redeployment for all individuals in disestablished roles will now be considered.” There has been no elaboration on what roles are to go.

However, it is clear that not all staff whose jobs are to disappear will be found other roles in what is a cost cutting, not a cost-rearrangement, exercise. Daily News understands that cutbacks in the number of free counseling hours the Foundation provides to people affected by HIV have already seen at least one counselor depart for private practise.

“There were two key drivers underpinning the proposal for change,” says Myers. “The NZAF needs to be fit-for-purpose to deliver a new strategic plan and the Ending HIV programme and part of this is ensuring the financial sustainability of the organisation into the future.”

“Despite one minor budget increase in 2014, NZAF had not received any addition to core funding since 2009. The organisation has not been able to absorb the cost of inflation and this means in real terms, its prevention and support work has conservatively had a funding cut of 7% over the past 8 years.”

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