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Union To Protest IRD Suspensions Of Strikers

Sunday 23 May 2004

Union To Protest Ird Suspensions Of Strikers

“Inland Revenue Department’s suspension of two striking staff is heavy handed bullying and this gross over-reaction will be strongly protested by Union members” said Martin Cooney, Organiser of the National Union of Public Employees (NUPE). NUPE represents about 40 members in IRD but is asking all 2,000 Union members nationwide to protest the suspension.

“NUPE gave notice on 21 April then began the strike on 4 May where NUPE members began refusing to volunteer for extra duties. NUPE members are taking action over IRD forcing unwilling staff members to work outside their normal work and to protest at the inequity of the recent pay offer where team leaders get 8.8% and most team members 1.1%.,” said Martin Cooney.

“The Union delegate and her co-worker who were suspended had plenty of work to do in their own job description,” said Martin Cooney. “IRD appear to have tried to isolate the staff they see as ring leaders and have now suspended them. Unfortunately IRD have been so used to getting their own way that when a Union stands up to them, their managers do not know how to react. It is like hitting the big red button when a tiger moth enters your air space.”

“NUPE members nationwide understand that an injury to one is an injury to all,” said Martin Cooney. “The IRD can expect a strong reaction to their heavy handed escalation against two long standing staff members who have been taking lawful industrial action. NUPE members will first be asked to donate to a relief fund by ‘buying’ two yellow ribbons for the suspended strikers. A rally will also be held outside IRD in Christchurch at 12.30 tomorrow.”

ENDS

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