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Government accused of overseeing attacks on Air NZ

Government accused of overseeing attacks on Air NZ workers

For Immediate Release
November 10th, 2007

The Workers' Party has accused the government of overseeing attacks on workers following Air New Zealand's decision to lock out 150 staff.

The state-owned airline issued lockout notices yesterday after union members refused to accept pay cuts forced upon non-union employees.

Workers' Party leader Daphna Whitmore said the news affirmed the Labour government's disregard for the welfare of workers.

She said: “Over 1000 workers have lost their jobs at Air New Zealand in a year. Many more have suffered cuts to pay and conditions. Meanwhile the Labour government has done nothing – except rake in the profits.”

Air New Zealand recorded record profits last year of $214 million, more than doubling last year's figures. The government, who hold an 80% stake in the company, collected $150 million.

Whitmore said the Employment Relations Act had restricted workers’ ability to fight back against the company's demands.

She said: “The government is focused on driving up business profits, at the cost of people's jobs and conditions.”

The Workers' Party is a socialist political party active in campaigns throughout New Zealand.


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