Legal Aid Workers Threatened With Suspension
Legal Aid Workers Threatened With Suspension Walk Out, Union Negotiates Return To Work
‘National Union of Public Employees (NUPE) members who work for the government body that grants legal aid were threatened with suspension today and walked off the job in protest. The suspension threat came after staff stopped processing or approving invoices for legal aid, which meant delayed payments to lawyers,’ said NUPE Organiser John Kerr.
‘Our members were furious at the attitude of the employer, which is, after all a crown entity. They promptly walked out and, in Wellington, marched off to Parliament to let MPs know what they thought,’ aid John Kerr.
‘NUPE has negotiated a return to work tomorrow and the parties have agreed to review their respective positions in collective bargaining. We are having a meeting next Wednesday to see if we can resolve this. Members have left us in no doubt however, that unless the employer puts something on the table, this dispute is not going to end,’ said John Kerr
We have been in talks for 10 months and the Agency have told us they are “philosophically opposed” to a flat rate percentage increase for members. All we are asking for is a pay increase that reflects cost of living increases and other pressures on members’ incomes’, said John Kerr.
‘NUPE represents legal aid staff in Wellington,
Christchurch, Invercargill and Whangarei. Moreover, we
represent all of the staff who process legal aid
applications for the Waitangi Tribunal,’ said John