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Carter asked to explain union/non-union pay row

Carter asked to explain union/non-union pay row

National’s Education spokeswoman Anne Tolley has issued a ‘please explain’ to Education Minister Chris Carter over the row involving union and non-unionised teachers.

Mrs Tolley’s letter follows news that primary teachers who have chosen not to be members of a union are being penalised for their decision.

NZEI members who signed a collective agreement with the Ministry of Education were granted four months’ back-pay, but non-union members who signed individual contracts were only given two months’ back-pay.

In addition, teachers were only given a matter of hours to sign their individual agreements.

“Teachers should be valued and treated equally whether they are on individual or collective contracts,” says Mrs Tolley.

“Teachers used to be paid the same regardless of union membership. Something changed and, this year, individual contracts did not include the same provisions as the collective agreement.

“No one made any attempt to inform non-union teachers of the change. Teachers were presented with their contracts at short notice and asked to sign quickly in order to receive back-pay.

“The Ministry of Education did not act in good faith, and I am asking Education Minister Chris Carter to explain himself to the teachers who felt pressured into signing contracts without being given time to seek proper advice.

“Our teachers deserve better.”


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