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ERB: A Licence To Reap Personal Grievance Payouts

The Employment Relations Bill is a charter to take firms for a personal grievance,” said ACT Leader, Hon Richard Prebble.

Mr Prebble was speaking to the New Zealand Contractors’ Federation Annual
Conference in Napier, this afternoon.

“Bogus personal grievance cases are already at scandalous levels. Over 5,000 such cases last year, that’s nearly 14 a day!

“Under the ERB, cases can be brought for every ground in the Human Rights Act and up to three years later. Through what I hope is a drafting error (and I hope it will be corrected next week) it appears that some personal grievance cases can be brought up to 9 years later.

“The boss is deemed guilty until the firm proves otherwise.

“What surprised me at select committee was, despite submissions organised by the trade union movement, the committee heard very few cases of genuine exploitation by employers.

“After all the government propaganda, and considering there are over 250,000 employers in the country, and considering human nature, I expected to listen to dozens of harrowing cases.

“The trade union movement had to dredge up cases five years old about companies that have gone out of existence.

“ACT says the Employment Relations Bill must go, but let’s take the chance to improve the employment law, to make it fair and more flexible. We need a law that encourages investment, growth and jobs.

“Let me predict that the militant unionists cannot resist the temptation to flex their industrial muscle – this Labour/Alliance coalition’s popularity will evaporate.

“National intends to campaign on a return to the Employment Contract Act.

“ACT intends to campaign on a policy of a fresh new approach.

“Let’s return to the best of the Employment Contracts Act, with a more flexible approach. Let’s get rid of the bogus grievance cases.

“Why not have the vision of having the best employment law we can achieve,” said Hon Richard Prebble.

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


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