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Strikes Enter Third Week - Union Proposes Talks

23 May 2005
For immediate release

Strikes enter third week - union proposes talks

Nationwide rolling strikes at ANZ National Bank enter their third week today, following the bank walking out on employment negotiations on 6 May. Workers at the bank are seeking fair compensation for working weekends and evenings, and assurances that the bank is going to treat the staff from its two merging brands, ANZ and National, equally.

Finsec the union representing ANZ National staff, have today asked the bank to attend mediated negotiations. They are still waiting for a response from the bank.

"Our members want to get back to serving their customers." Said Karen Skinner from Finsec "But without fairness and equity they feel they are unable to do that."

"This dispute raises some serious questions for staff, but also for customers. Like staff, customers should be asking what this integration means for them." said Ms Skinner.

"Our concern is that the integration of the two bank brands is resulting in a lowest common denominator business practice and downward pressure on terms and conditions. While this may result in huge short term profits, it is at the expense of workers and results in a decreased focus on customer service. This should be a concern for customers as well as staff." Said Ms Skinner

Many ANZ and National Bank branches around the country have now been on strike at least once in the past fortnight. Many have already taken action several times and will continue to do so. Striking workers have been collecting signatures for a petition calling on the bank to treat workers equitably, The petition has now reached nearly 8,000 signatures.

ENDS

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