July 7, 2008
_National’s 90 day policy would lower wages – EPMU
At a time when New Zealanders need to raise their wages to deal with skyrocketing costs of living the National Party is pledging policy that would do the exact opposite says the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union.
The call follows National’s confirmation that its small business policy is expected to include a plan to take work rights from workers in their first 90 days of employment, despite this being rejected when they tried to introduce the measure in 2006.
The biggest challenge facing New Zealand today is to improve living standards by lifting wages and productivity, EPMU national secretary Andrew Little says.
“Strong work rights give security and a basic level of fairness to New Zealand workers and are an essential condition for lifting wages and living standards
“There’s never been a place in the world or a time in history where living standards and wages rose on the back of eroding work rights, and our past experience here in New Zealand confirms that.
“We need to see a whole policy approach which provides a vision for lifting wages and growing a healthy economy rather than just a series of piecemeal policies pitched to some at the expense of others.”
The EPMU launched its Wage Drive campaign last week and will be holding 25 mass-member rallies around the country starting on 1 August to promote stronger work rights and higher wages.