Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Maritime Union says foreign labour fears confirmed

Maritime Union says labour shortage claim has been blown out of water

The Maritime Union says that its fears about short-term casual labour being introduced into New Zealand have been confirmed.

Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says the introduction of more cheap foreign labour into the New Zealand fishing industry is the death knell for New Zealand fishing employment.

He says revelations New Zealand fishing crews were being made redundant then being replaced by cheaper foreign crews blew the argument of labour shortages out of the water.

Independent Fisheries were given permission last week to import twenty Indonesian workers to replace a New Zealand crew made redundant in October 2004 amidst claims re-employed local workers were having to accept major pay cuts.

The decision was finally approved yesterday by Associate Immigration Minister Damian O'Connor after some second thoughts.

Mr Hanson says the Government is sending the message that laying off your staff and flying in short-term casual labour from overseas that are paid half the wages is now OK.

"We believe that this is a sign of the way things will be under the new free trade agreements, and if the New Zealand economy becomes dependant on cheap labour, then cheap labour will remain when the inevitable economic downturn arrives."

He says the fishing industry should hang its head in shame for the damage it has caused to fish stocks through over-fishing, which is being used as an excuse for attacking wages and conditions.

"Overfishing has wrecked their profits and now they are trying to fix the problem by slashing workers wages it is a disgraceful indictment of the industry."

Protecting remaining stocks will have a bad effect on industry workers, but failure to do so will have even more drastic effects for future generations of New Zealanders, says Mr Hanson.

There seemed to be no long term plan for New Zealand's maritime sector, which was suffering from a short-term mentality that was creating social and environmental crises.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news