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

 


ITF president weighs in on fisheries dispute

ITF president weighs in on multi-million dollar fisheries dispute as New Zealand Parliament delays action


International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) president Paddy Crumlin has met with key stakeholders in Auckland, New Zealand, about the ongoing campaign to secure NZD30 million in unpaid wages for fishers in the region.

The ITF has contributed to Slave Free Seas’ campaign to claim outstanding wages in the vicinity of NZD30 million through the New Zealand courts.

Mr Crumlin met with senior union representatives from Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, the Slave Free Seas advocacy group and the Merchant Service Guild as part of the Regional Maritime Federation meeting.

The Regional Maritime Federation brings together maritime unions from Australia, New Zealand and PNG to try to build trade union capacity in the region.

Mr Crumlin, who is also Maritime Union of Australia national secretary, said it was imperative that fisheries workers get better wages and conditions in an industry in which 24,000 people die across the world each year.

"Slave Free Seas acts on behalf of fishers where they have no representation and legal redress,” Mr Crumlin said.

"We commend the initiative of Slave Free Seas as we try to break apart the industrial model upon which commercial fishing is built because it is akin to modern day slavery."

Maritime Union of New Zealand National Secretary Joe Fleetwood said the New Zealand Parliament needed to pass its fishing slavery laws as a matter of urgency.

"The bill has now been pushed number 27 on the parliamentary bills list, placing it in real danger of not being addressed before the upcoming national election,” Mr Fleetwood said.

"This is outrageous. The New Zealand Government is missing in action when it comes to protecting the rights and welfare of fishers in our region."

It is almost two years since the government concluded a ministerial Inquiry into the use of foreign charter vessels after national and international accusations of slave labour in New Zealand waters.

The legislation to implement the recommendations, including a requirement that all vessels be New Zealand flagged by 2016, is yet to be passed.

New Zealand’s use of cheap labour on fishing boats was scathingly labelled ‘21st Century slavery’ in a US State Department report released in mid-2012.

It cited conditions of forced labour, including debt bondage, imposition of significant debts, physical violence, mental abuse and excessive hours of work aboard vessels in New Zealand waters.

The issue was mentioned more recently in the Global Slavery Index and will continue to be an embarrassing topic of discussion until the Government gets its act together and passes the necessary law.

Slave Free Seas is a team of the world’s foremost experts on modern slavery, including international lawyers specialising in human rights and maritime law, world-leading academics, and advocates from the private sector.

While still involved with the legislative changes in the New Zealand fishing industry, the group's focus is on the development of a global legal toolbox to effectively end labour exploitation and abuse wherever it occurs in the fishing industry across the globe.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

To date, the Opposition has continued to occupy itself with the marginalia of the issue. E.g. whether Key did or didn’t know whether Barack Obama would be present at the US briefing last week on IS, or whether New Zealand’s military involvement is or isn’t already a fait accompli.

It might be better to tackle the issue, head on. Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn.
More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Labour: Tea Breaks 'Gone By Lunch Time'

“How cynical that on the eve of Labour weekend, the National government is pushing through legislation that takes away the statutory right to tea and meal breaks along with collective bargaining protections, and makes vulnerable workers jobs even less secure." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: October 22 — Parliament Today

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Review Team Named, Leadership Campaign Starts

Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban.

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news