Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Proposed Employment Bill Changes “Cosmetic”

Proposed Employment Bill Changes “Cosmetic”

Wednesday 5th Jul 2000
Richard Prebble
Media Release -- Economy

ACT Leader Richard Prebble expressed anger that government MPs were using parliamentary privilege to keep proposed changes to the Employment Relations Bill secret, while at the same time Cabinet Ministers were using media statements to create the impression the government was “listening” to concerns.

“Yesterday, National MP Katherine Rich was threatened with a breach of privilege by Labour MP Graham Kelly. He said she had revealed to her local newspaper that there were no substantive changes to the Bill. But today Michael Cullen outlined seven so-called changes without a murmur from Mr Kelly, the select committee chairman,” Mr Prebble said.

“He is prepared to bully a new young Opposition MP but has done nothing about his Minister’s actions. The ACT Party will not be silenced. The amendments proposed by Dr Cullen are largely cosmetic.

“While we haven’t seen the government’s detailed proposals, I have reason to believe that some of the changes are totally superficial and will not alter the legal effect of the Bill.

“It is our understanding that most of the proposed changes are only happening where the coalition realises what it was proposing is totally unworkable,” Mr Prebble said.

“ACT believes the government now knows that declaring all dependent contractors employees is totally unworkable, but they are still seeking to overturn the contractual situation when it suits the unions.



“We’ve always predicted that the government would do a U-turn over fixed term contracts when they realised that as it was drafted, Christine Rankin had a job for life. The ludicrous ban on communication with employees is also totally impractical given that most companies employ five people or less and putting the boss in Coventry is unworkable.

“The continuity of employment clause, which as drafted would require employers to go on paying staff even when there is no work, is so draconian that no employer would sign a collective agreement. It’s safe to predict that will be changed. But frankly I don’t believe that Cullen’s claim that the power of unions to enter non-unionised workplaces will be changed.

“ACT believes that the absurd clause which covers directors’ liability will continue to be in the Bill despite Cullen’s press statements. All he appears to be conceding is that the clause is a nonsense.

“Instead of Dr Cullen and I trading guesses on what’s in the Bill, the government should be open and transparent and present a supplementary order paper to Parliament outlining publicly all the changes they propose to this legislation. They should then send it to the select committee and allow those who have made a submission to comment on the amendments. That would be a democratic, parliamentary way of proceeding with this poorly drafted dictatorial Bill,” Mr Prebble said. ENDS

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

SCOOP COVERAGE: CHRISTCHURCH MOSQUES TERROR ATTACK


RBNZ Act Review: Govt Plans Deposit Guarantee Scheme

The Coalition Government today announced moves to make New Zealand’s banking system safer for customers through a new deposit protection regime, and work to strengthen accountability for banks’ actions.

The in-principle decisions are part of Phase 2 of the Review of the Reserve Bank Act, which is making sure the 30-year old laws regulating our banking system are up to scratch. More>>

 

Stats NZ: Gender Inclusive Questions Introduced

More than 28,000 New Zealand households will be asked to take part in the upcoming Household Economic Survey. Starting this year, the survey will ask people to describe their gender – whether that is male, female, or if they see themselves another way, such as one of many non-binary genders. More>>

New Report: Are We Listening To Children?

A report released today is a sharp reminder that what children and young people say makes a difference, and that it’s time we paid more attention to their views, says Children’s Commissioner Andrew Becroft. More>>

ALSO:

The Nation: Canadian Euthanasia Practitioner Stefanie Green

The euthanasia debate is progressing, with the End of Life Choice Bill expected to have its second reading in Parliament on Wednesday. A similar bill was passed in Canada in 2016 ... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Gun Buy-Back Scheme

Do gun amnesties and buy-backs save lives? Since it’s always difficult to exclude all of the socio-economic factors that may be operating in parallel, the die-hard denialists in the gun lobby will always be able to find a bit of wiggle room. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The New Op Burnham Revelations

Eight centuries ago at Beziers in France, the papal soldiers besieging the town faced much the same problem as the New Zealand troops engaged in Operation Burnham – namely, how to how to tell the difference among the town’s inhabitants as to which were Cathar heretics, and which were true Catholics... More>>

ALSO:

World Refugee Day: Former Refugees Say Policy Must Change

This year, 1000 refugees will be able to resettle here in New Zealand - but there are restrictions on where those people can come from. More>>

ALSO:

The Lobbyist Staffer: PM Defends Handling Of Conflicts Of Interest

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says she's comfortable with the way her interim chief of staff's conflicts of interest were managed. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels