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Work rights would be enhanced by meal breaks

CTU MEDIA RELEASE 29 May 2008

Work rights would be enhanced by meal and breastfeeding breaks

Increased provisions for meal and refreshment and breastfeeding breaks would continue to improve the rights at work for Kiwi workers, the Council of Trade Unions told a select committee today.

"Providing a statutory right to rest and meal breaks is a very significant contribution to securing fair working conditions for many workers, but especially workers who we know are vulnerable," CTU secretary Carol Beaumont said.

"Some workers, especially in sectors like retail, fast food and hospitality are routinely not getting rest and meal breaks. This Bill is necessary to ensure, and enforce, that all workers have assured entitlements to rest and meal breaks."

"And similarly while some employers have come on board with breaks and facilities for breastfeeding mums, a guaranteed work right will help ensure this is more accessible."

"Breast feeding contributes to overall health goals and is essential in achieving better health outcomes for babies, children, mother and better long-term health outcomes for the population. Ensuring breastfeeding mums have the ability to feed at work is an important contribution to this."

ENDS

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