July 16, 2008
83 words is not a policy - EPMU
National's ACC "policy" is an insult to working New Zealanders says the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union.
The call follows the party's release of eighty three words about their plans for ACC - the institution that offers rehabilitation and compensation to hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders every year.
EPMU national secretary Andrew Little says ACC plays a critical role in the working lives of nearly all New Zealanders at one time or another.
"ACC is a cornerstone of Kiwi work life and is relied on by thousands of working people at any one time but National has provided us with no detail whatsoever on what they intend to do with it.
"Accident protection and compensation is a critical work rights issue and our members have a right to a secure and predictable system rather than eighty three words of vague intention.
"The closest thing to a policy in here is a promise of a review, presumably with an eye to privatisation, but nowhere is there mention of consulting workers or their unions in such a process.
"Kiwi workers are the ones at the sharp end of accident insurance and our members are determined to have their say because it's their lives and wellbeing at stake. If that means we would need to treat ACC as an industrial issue then we would do so."
The EPMU is New Zealand's largest private sector union, representing 50,000 members across eleven industries.
EPMU delegates from around the country unanimously condemned the privatisation of ACC at the union's recent national conference.