Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Forest exports at risk over certification non compliance


Monday 18 February 2013

Forest exports at risk over certification non compliance

New Zealand’s forest exports are being put risk as the industry continues to drag the chain on a key aspect of its certification, a union for workers in the wood industries says.

Appalling forest safety statistics have been in the spotlight last year and in the first two months of the year with two deaths already reported.

And as a two-month round of safety briefings for forestry workers gets underway in Kaitaia today, FIRST Union is warning that the continued barriers being put in the way of forestry workers accessing union advice and support will not only have a counterproductive effect on workplace safety, but also put forestry’s critical certification at risk.

“New Zealand forest owners have responded to growing international awareness around the environmental and social issues embedded in wood production by obtaining certification from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), an internationally recognised certification body,” FIRST Union General Secretary Robert Reid said.

“Certification allows producers to charge a price premium for their product and increasingly certification is essential to be able to sell into the global market.”

“However a key aspect of FSC certification is an obligation on forest owners, their managers and contractors to facilitate the activity of unions in the industry, recognising the union’s role in representing and supporting the forestry workforce.”

“This is clearly not happening in New Zealand with unions side-lined in the production of the local FSC standard and years of antagonism from the industry to unions playing any role at all. Now unions have been locked out of the current round of safety briefings.”

“At its core, this issue is about safety. Unions have established expertise in workplace safety programmes and in helping workers to give meaningful effect to a cornerstone of the Health and Safety in Employment Act – worker participation.”

“Workers are the ones risking their lives every day when they go to work in our forests and attempting to improve health and safety without the systematic involvement of workers is ineffective and completely misguided.”

“Forest owners put the entire New Zealand forest and wood processing industry at risk if they do not facilitate unions in the sector and work constructively with us to bring down the horrific accident and death rates in the industry,” Robert Reid said.

Ends.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Half Empty: Dairy Prices Drop To Lowest Since August 2009

Dairy product prices fell to the lowest level in more than five years in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, led by declines in butter milk powder and whole milk powder.

”Stocks of dairy commodities are building across the globe due to Russia’s current ban on importing dairy products from many Western nations, and a lack of urgency from Chinese buyers, while at the same time global milk supplies are expanding,” AgriHQ dairy analyst Susan Kilsby said in a note. More>>

 

Slippage: NZ Universities Still In Top 3% Globally

This year the University of Auckland ranked 175 (down from 164 last year); the University of Otago ranked 251-275th (down from 226-250), both Victoria University of Wellington and the University of Canterbury held their ranks (at 276-300thand 301-350 respectively), while the University of Waikato dropped from 301-350 to 351-400. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell:
On The Last Rites For The TPP

The Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal is one of those litmus issues that has always had more to do with one’s place on the political spectrum than with any imminent reality... For the TPP’s friends and foes alike though, the end now seems nigh. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Farcical Elevation Of David Seymour

With the election won, it’s time to find jobs for the boy. David Seymour is the Act Party’s latest scrounger to be rewarded by the National Party, and not only with a seat in Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

As Key Mulls Joining ISIS Fighting: McCully Speech To UN Backs Security Council Bid

It is an honour to address you today on behalf of the Prime Minister and Government of New Zealand. Our General Election took place last week - our Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key is engaged in forming a government and that is why he is unable to be here in New York... More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Cunliffe Triggers Party Wide Leadership Contest

David Cunliffe has resigned as Labour Leader, but says he will seek re-election... If there is any contest the election will have to go through a process involving the party membership and union affiliates. More>>

ALSO:

Flyover Appeal: Progress And Certainty, Or Confusion And More Delays?

Lindsay Shelton: The Transport Agency, embarrassed by the rejection of its flyover alongside the Basin Reserve, says it’s appealing because the decision could “constrain progress.” Yet for most clear-sighted Wellingtonians a 300-metre-long concrete structure above Kent and Cambridge Terraces would in no way be seen as progress… More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Cunliffe’s Last Stand

Right now, embattled Labour leader David Cunliffe has three options. None of them are particularly attractive for him personally, or for the Labour Party... More>>

ALSO:

Key Seeking 'New Ideas': Look To Children’s Commissioner On Poverty - Greens

John Key should not reinvent the wheel when it comes to ideas for tackling child poverty, and instead look to the recommendations of the Children’s Commissioner’s Expert Group on Child Poverty, Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei says. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
More RSS  RSS
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news