Attacks on work rights lose elections - EPMU
November 25, 2007
John Howard and his government have learnt a hard lesson about work rights and losing elections says the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union.
The call follows the landslide victory by the Australian Labor Party in yesterday’s general election which was largely the result of adverse reaction to Howard’s Workchoices legislation – legislation that took work rights and job security from millions of Australian workers.
EPMU national secretary Andrew Little says there are plenty of lessons from the election result for political parties here.
“When the Liberal coalition stripped protection against unfair dismissal from millions of Aussie workers and tilted the balance of industrial power unfairly in favour of employers, the Australian electorate decided it had gone too far.
“The National party’s promise to take unfair dismissal rights from hundreds of thousands of Kiwi workers under the ‘ninety day no rights’ bill comes from the same stable as Workchoices and it’ll get the same response.
“The EPMU led the union-wide campaign to defeat the National Party bill last year and with their ‘ninety day no rights’ policy and other threats to New Zealand workers still on their books we’re planning an even bigger campaign next year.”
The EPMU is New Zealand’s largest private sector union and represents fifty thousand working New Zealanders.