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Govt Hypocritical On Employment Laws

National MP Gerry Brownlee has dismissed as laughable State Services Minister Trevor Mallard's suggestion that the Opposition has been hypocritical in its criticism of the Government's conduct as an employer.

"It is laughable that the Government is condoning the State Services Commissioner openly challenging the validity of the Employment Relations Act when it comes to his arrangements as an employer," Mr Brownlee said.

Mr Mallard said it was up to the courts to decide how the Employment Relations and State Sector Acts related to each other. He said 'nothing, nothing that I have seen has taken from my opinion that the commissioner has acted appropriately in the application of the law'.

The objectives of the Employment Relations Act 2000 include 'the promotion of mutual trust', 'recognising that employment relationships must be built on good faith behaviour', 'acknowledging and addressing the inherent inequality of bargaining power in employment relationships' and to 'protect the integrity of individual choice'.

"The Employment Relations Act is cornerstone legislation for the current Government.

"It is hypocritical for the Government to impose this legislation on the private sector and then condone the State Services Commissioner's disregard for it.

"The State Sector Act applies to most public servants, including teachers and kindergarten teachers. The Government has dictated to every other employer in New Zealand how his or her employees must be treated but at the same time it hides behind the State Sector Act when it falls short.

"The Government has inflicted the new law on the private sector but it's too tough for them to comply with," Gerry Brownlee said.

Ends


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