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ERA Pushing Up The Cost Of Strikes

Industrial stoppages have cost the country more than $900,000 in the first three months of this year and indications are that the cost of strikes will be worse for the June quarter, due to the Employment Relations Act, ACT leader Richard Prebble says.

"The government said the new law would improve industrial relations. But if you take strikes as a measure, it's clear that the industrial scene has deteriorated," Mr Prebble said.

"Statistics NZ figures show there were eight major disputes during the March 2001 quarter, which cost a total of 6206 person-days of work and an estimated $934,000 loss in wages and salaries.

"ACT believes from business feedback that the June quarter figures will show a further increase in industrial militancy. I predict the losses due to strikes for the June quarter will be twice the March figure.

"New Zealand history has shown that industrial militancy leads to more militancy.

"The government should realise that everyone loses in a strike ' not just the employer but also every employee, most of whom can't afford to lose the money and will never make it up," Mr Prebble said.

ENDS


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