September 17, 2008
Strike action signalled at oil and gas contractor
Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union members have signalled their intention of strike action to Fitzroy Engineering - Taranaki's biggest engineering firm and a major contractor to the region's oil and gas industry.
The company will be served a fourteen day notice of intention to strike later tomorrow but negotiations are expected to continue.
EPMU director of organising Ged O'Connell says the strike notice is a sign members are serious about getting a fair deal.
"Nobody takes strike action lightly but in this case our members are determined to get a fair result from their negotiations.
"Fitzroy are a big company doing very well from a booming oil and gas industry and if they want to retain their skilled workforce they are going to have to provide a good offer.
"Our members in this industry are being headhunted by Australian companies on a daily basis because the wages over there are up to twice as high.
"There's a lot of talk about the need for higher wages to keep skilled workers here in New Zealand and it's situations like this where that talk needs to be turned into action."
The EPMU represents 50,000 working New Zealanders across 11 industries, including more than 7,000 in heavy engineering.