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

 


Will working families be hurt by a TPPA agreement?

May 20, 2013

Will working families be hurt by a TPPA agreement?

Unions in Australia and New Zealand have united to call on governments negotiating the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) to protect the rights and living conditions of working families.

The TPPA is a proposed free trade agreement for the Asia Pacific being negotiated this week in Peru. Countries that are taking part include Australia, New Zealand, the United States, Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam, Japan, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico and Chile.

FIRST Union, the Service and Food Workers Union, the NZ Dairy Workers Union, the Engineering, Printing & Manufacturing Union, the NZ Meat Workers Union, the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union, the Australasian Meat Industry Employees Union and the National Union of Workers have passed a resolution through the International Union of Food with three key demands for participating governments.

The resolution demands the TPPA maintain the rights of working people to access affordable generic medicines. It also calls for the rights of governments to subsidise the costs of medicines not be jeopardized.

The resolution demands the TPPA respect freedom of association and the rights of workers to collectively bargain.

The resolution demands any TPPA not give foreign investors the rights to sue governments for millions of dollars if their investments are harmed by law or policy. Australia’s plain packaging laws would have exposed the Federal Government to such legal action if investors had these rights to sue.

Australia’s National Union of Workers assistant secretary, Paul Richardson, said unions are concerned about this proposed agreement.

“Any TPPA arrangement that erodes the right of workers to cheap medicine and to the right to collective bargaining is a bad deal for working families,” he said.

New Zealand’s First Union Secretary, Robert Reid, said a TPPA should not restrict a government’s ability to do its job.

“Governments should have the right to make laws that prioritise citizen rights ahead of investor rights,” he said.

www.firstunion.org.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Ombudsman’s Verdict On Paula Rebstock And Ian Rennie

Unfortunately, the brave and damning report by Ombudsman Ron Paterson on the “flawed” and “unfair” inquiry conducted by Dame Paula Rebstock into events at MFAT pulls back the veil on a far wider issue. More>>

ALSO:

Charities' Report: Stressed Families - Overstretched Services

“Like so many of the whānau and families they serve social service organisations are under huge financial stress. The support demanded from desperate people in communities is far outreaching the resources available.” More>>

ALSO:

Detention: Wellingtonians Protest Treatment Of Refugees

Peace Action Wellington (PAW) and around 50 Wellingtonians blockaded the Australian High Commission, creating a symbolic detention centre to protest the Australian Government's policy of mandatory offshore detention for refugees and asylum seekers. More>>

ALSO:

Diver's Alarums: Breach Means Training Provider Must Repay $1.47 Million

The New Zealand School of Outdoor Studies is to repay $1.47 million (GST-exclusive) to the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) following an investigation which showed that some student enrolments between 2009 -2014 could not be validated and that courses were under-delivered against their agreement with the TEC. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Government Plans Suggest Bulk Funding Return

Plans by the Government to return to bulk funding are likely to see increased class sizes and schools most in need missing out on much-needed resources, Labour’s Acting Education spokesperson Grant Robertson says. More>>

ALSO:

Interim Report: Auckland Looks Long Term To Pay-Per-Km Road Pricing

Aucklanders can expect to be paying variable rates per kilometre to travel on the city's most congested roads under an emerging transport strategy being formulated by the government and the Auckland Council. More>>

ALSO:

Despite Promises: Government Extends Iraq Deployment

Cabinet has agreed to extend New Zealand’s contribution to the joint New Zealand-Australia mission to train Iraqi Security Forces until November 2018. More>>

ALSO:

On The 'Terrorism' Card:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news