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Union Advertisements “Employer Bashing”

MEDIA RELEASE

Wednesday 6 October 1999

UNION ADVERTISEMENTS “EMPLOYER BASHING” AND SELF SELF-SERVING

A union advert suggesting that employers sack their workers rather than let a parent care for their sick kids, is self-serving employer bashing, Employers’ Federation CEO said today.

This follows the publishing of one page advertisements by the New Zealand Engineering Printing and Manufacturing Union which state,” My kids are sick. I need to go home. If I lose my job how will we cope? Your vote is your voice.”

“There are over 250,000 employers in New Zealand providing the work opportunities the country seeks. To paint those employers in this light is nothing short of irresponsible,” Mr Marshall said today.

“Yes there are some ratbag employers, just as there are ratbag employees, but it is a very small percentage. We have always had them and always will. Changing laws won’t change this.

“It is unfortunate that the unions are already promoting conflict. One cannot be blamed for thinking that they have an interest in doing so. They know that repealing the Employment Contracts Act will mean more conflict, more strikes and more union fees.

“But what about better co operation and local partnerships? Since the ECA we have had the lowest number of strikes in two thirds of a century – 64 years. Now employers and employees talk to each other directly.

“And yes, it also has meant more jobs. Unemployment has dived from around 11% to 7% and falling. Union membership has dropped to about 18% of the workforce.

“This means that 93% of people wanting employment are employed and 82% of them choose not to join a union. What’s wrong with that?”

ENDS

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