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Govt acts to resolve plumbing industry issues

11 July 2006

Government acts to resolve plumbing industry issues

The government is moving to increase the number of qualified and registered plumbers, gasfitters and drainlayers following an independent review, the Minister for Tertiary Education Michael Cullen announced today.

Dr Cullen commissioned the review, carried out by lawyer Hazel Armstrong late last year, after concerns were raised regarding the relationship between the Plumbing, Gasfitting and Drainlaying Industry Training Organisation and the Plumbers, Gasfitters and Drainlayers Registration Board.

“Plumbing, gasfitting and drainlaying are crucial trades for a wide cross-section of New Zealanders, from homeowners to large industry.

“That is why the government acted to deal with a number of issues affecting the industry after it became apparent that the issues could not be resolved by the industry itself,” Dr Cullen said.

The report found that training and registration systems in the plumbing, gasfitting and drainlaying industry were not well aligned. As a result, trainees have not been provided with appropriate support, and this has not served the interests of the industry and consumers.

Importantly, however, the report noted that there was no evidence of a current problem with the quality of workmanship or significant health and safety issues arising from the work of qualified persons.
A cross-agency working group – led by the Tertiary Education Commission – is being established to ensure all the review’s findings are acted upon.

“I am confident the issues between the Plumbing, Gasfitting and Drainlaying Industry Training Organisation and the Plumbers, Gasfitters and Drainlayers Registration Board can be resolved.

“It is vital that organisations work together to train people with the skills this country needs, and match the government’s commitment to countering skill shortages through industry training and the Modern Apprenticeships programme.”

The report can be found at: http://www.tec.govt.nz/

ENDS

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