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Coalition Celebrates Right to Workplace Flexibilty

Coalition For Quality Flexible Work

30 June 2008

Coalition Celebrates Right to Workplace Flexibilty

The Coalition For Quality Flexible Work will celebrate a new workplace right tomorrow when Green MP Sue Kedgley's bill providing employees with caregiving responsibilities the right to request flexible working arrangements becomes law.

The coalition will hold a celebratory breakfast in Wellington with speakers including Ms Kedgley, Hon. Ruth Dyson and Peter McKee from Windsor Engineering. Actress Miranda Harcourt will MC.

"This is a significant step towards acknowledging the responsibilities of employees with caring responsibilities and a step towards changing New Zealand's long hours and inflexible workplace culture," said Angela McLeod of the New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women, a coalition member.

"The Flexible Working Arrangements law is a win/win for employers and employees. Businesses that adopt flexible work practices have high staff morale and improved recruitment and retention. Similar legislation in the UK has been an overwhelming success."

Andrew Campbell, spokesperson for the finance sector union Finsec, said the legislation was a much needed employment right, and genuine access to flexibility was desperately needed to address work life balance issues in the sector.

"Greater access to flexible working arrangements will allow a better fit of work, family and other commitments. It is important to have a legal right to bridge the gap between employers stating they support flexible work but not providing it," he said.

"This Act is the first step in enshrining genuinely flexible working practices in New Zealand for all workers. Over time it has the potential to bring about a seismic shift in how we work."

BPW and Finsec are two of 50 community, business, trade union and legal organisations who are part of the Coalition For Quality Flexible Work. The coalition has campaigned for flexible working arrangements for the past 18 months and has strongly supported Sue Kedgley's bill.

Media are welcome at the Coalition For Quality Flexible Work celebratory breakfast:

* St John's Hall, Willis Street, Wellington

* 7.45am - 9am, Tuesday 1 July 2008


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