CTU MEDIA RELEASE
21 November 2007
Time is right for flexible working hours
“The time is right for workers to have the right to request flexible working hours, and provisions passed into law tonight are an excellent step towards building a culture that recognises workers' responsibilities outside of the workplace,” Council of Trade Unionssecretary Carol Beaumont said tonight.
Parliament tonight passed the Employment Relations (Flexible Working Arrangements) Amendment Bill. Only ACT and National opposed the move.
“93% of 4,475 parents recently surveyed by the EEO Trust identified flexible working as the change that they would most like to see in workplaces. New Zealanders are increasingly saying the time has come for it.”
“Legislation is not in itself the only solution, but it does create a climate and culture of acceptance about the need for employer openness to requests - as well as a transparent process for employers to refuse requests.”
"Atpresent the law changeis restricted to people with care responsibilities. This is a good first step, and we will continue to advocate for all workers to have the right to request flexible hours."
“We were proud to campaign in support of this change alongside a Coalition of more than 50 other professional, business, community groups and unions collectively representing hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders.”
Workers in unions continued to bargain for improvements in collective employment agreements that increased work-life balance, Carol Beaumont said. "But this is an issue that also neededsupport in the law."
“We congratulate Sue Kedgley for progressing this bill through the house, and the majority of parties in Parliament who have supported it tonight.”