January 14, 2007
New Zealanders should have holiday to commemorate Sir Ed
The passing of Sir Edmund Hillary is a landmark event that all New Zealanders should be able to commemorate together says the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union.
The EPMU is backing calls for the day of Sir Edmund’s state funeral to be made a one-off holiday so that New Zealanders can take the time to honour him as a nation.
EPMU National Secretary Andrew Little says Hillary and his achievements represent the best of New Zealand values.
“Sir Edmund was a man who accomplished great things and did so with modesty, respect and dignity and all of these are qualities we should aspire to and be able to commemorate and celebrate together.
“Sir Edmund worked with others to make life better for people and did so with great modesty. He really is a symbol of what people can achieve by working together, and New Zealanders should be allowed the opportunity to reflect on this.
“At the very least we’d encourage employers to allow their workers time off next Tuesday so they can take part in this national occasion.”
Sir Edmund Hillary’s state funeral is scheduled for January 22 and will be televised nationwide by TVNZ.
The EPMU is the country’s largest private sector union, representing 50,000 working New Zealanders.