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Industrial Action: Biosecurity, Border Control, Fisheries

4 December 2012

Industrial Action To Hit Biosecurity, Border Control, Fisheries And Food Safety

PSA members at the Ministry of Primary Industries are taking industrial action later this month over the Ministry’s refusal to negotiate fairly and return to pay talks.

Three hour stop work meetings will be held on December 19. They will involve biosecurity and border staff at airports and ports around the country along with fisheries, forestry, food safety and MPI office staff.

The action comes after the Ministry refused to address a number of claims and claw backs it had presented and then chose to walk away from the negotiating table.

PSA National Secretary Richard Wagstaff says it is a very provocative negotiating position.

“MPI has put a new collective agreement on the table which removes a number of hard-fought employment conditions, reduces certainty around rosters and working hours, and will essentially deliver a zero pay increase to the majority of staff.”

“For MPI to then turn around and say it won’t address and seek agreement on the issues, goes against the normal collective bargaining process,” he says.

The PSA is claiming a 3% pay increase for all staff from July 2012 and 2.5% for each of the following two years. MPI’s position is to offer a 1.5% increase only to border staff, while the majority of staff are expected to have their pay set at the discretion of management.

“Our members have no confidence in MPI’s pay system. It is neither fair nor transparent and is being imposed on staff without agreement or negotiation,” says Mr Wagstaff.

“It’s unfortunate that MPI is taking such an intransigent approach and has provoked this dispute.”

Members at the stop work meeting will be considering MPI’s position and considering further industrial action.

The PSA continues to urge MPI to return to the negotiating table to try and discuss the issues in a reasoned and meaningful way.

ENDS

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