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Maritime Union holds public meeting in Whangarei

Maritime Union holds public meeting in Whangarei

The Maritime Union is holding a public meeting for its national Maritime Industry 2004 campaign in Whangarei.

The meeting is open to all interested members of the public and is at 7.30pm, Thursday 13 May, at the Cafler Rooms, Forum North, Rust Avenue, Whangarei.

Speaking at the meeting will be Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson and National Vice President Joe Fleetwood.

Mr Hanson says the New Zealand economy depends on a vibrant maritime industry, but our maritime workforce is being wrecked through casualization and insecure jobs.

He says small ports like Whangarei would benefit from a revitalized New Zealand coastal shipping service and a more stable maritime industry.

"The basic goal of our campaign is to ensure that New Zealand has a permanent, skilled and secure maritime workforce, through sensible regulation of the waterfront and a cabotage system that gives priority to New Zealand ships in the coastal trade."

Mr Hanson says many vulnerable New Zealand workers are suffering from the effects of casualization and contracting out, and the maritime industry was being hit particularly hard.

"New Zealand¹s biosecurity, our reputation with trading partners, and the safety and security of our ports are all under threat from the failed free market policies that are making our ports work against each other rather than with each other."

Meetings had already been held in ports such as Auckland and Mount Maunganui to a good response from members and local communities, he says.

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