February 26, 2003
Robson, union plan holiday tactics
PCP MP Matt Robson will this morning meet the leaders of the country’s largest trade union, the EPMU, to discuss the campaign for a fourth week’s leave.
The union’s national council, made up of shopfloor workers from around the country, is meeting in Wellington this week.
The EPMU has been campaigning since 1998 for a fourth week’s leave, and has promised to throw its weight behind Mr Robson’s private member’s bill which would guarantee all workers at least four weeks annual leave.
Mr Robson said this morning that he appreciated the support of the EPMU.
“While many of the union’s members already get four weeks leave a year, they are willing to fight to win that right for all workers,” he said.
He believed that the campaign was winnable, especially with the support of large Labour Party-affiliated trade unions like the EPMU.
“Some people in the Labour benches say that it’s not the right time to increase holiday entitlements,” he said. “I say to them that workers are becoming unwell because they aren’t getting enough holidays, and we have to act now to help them.”
However, he was pleased that the Labour Party had agreed to support sending his bill to the select committee so that it could be debated alongside the Government’s Holidays Amendment Act.
Mr Robson is due to meet the EPMU council at 11.45am.