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

 

Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress

Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress

Global unions the ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) and IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural and Hospitality Workers) today applauded the steps forward made in preventing often shocking abuse of crews on fishing vessels in New Zealand waters. They were reacting to the progress of a bill in the New Zealand parliament to protect workers on non-NZ fisheries vessels classed as foreign charter vessels (FCVs), and praised the work of New Zealand trade unions in delivering positive change for workers in the industry.

The Fisheries (Foreign Charter Vessels and Other Matters) Amendment Bill will mean that FCV vessels will need to be flagged in New Zealand – bringing them and those on them under the country’s laws and protection. It completed its second reading on 15 April 2014 with support from all sides of the house.

The New Zealand Government rejected changes to the Bill at the Select Committee that would have allowed exemptions from the new law, including fishing boats using treaty settlement quota and fishing for migratory species. Exemptions will remain for specific vessels engaged in research purposes.

The new law would require all FCVs except those operating within certain specified criteria to be reflagged to New Zealand while operating within New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

Liz Blackshaw is programme leader for the joint ITF/IUF Catcher to counter initiative, which works with fishers to build worker representation and improve conditions across the fishing industry. She commented: “Reflagging FCV vessels is an important step in cleaning up New Zealand’s fishing industry and removing ‘slave ships’ from its waters. The government made the right decision in removing exemptions, as these would have provided loopholes to get around the law.

“The change in the law is long overdue and there were still many outstanding issues in the industry, including a major court action currently in progress over underpayment of wages.”

IUF general secretary Ron Oswald commented: “The unions’ campaign was all about improving conditions for fisheries workers – something that this bill finally addresses.”

"However,” he added, “we are also seeking to help these workers unionise, and develop secure jobs in value-added processing within the national industry, and this should be a priority for New Zealand”.

He concluded: “The progress of this bill is a result of the hard work of New Zealand unions including the Maritime Union of New Zealand, the Merchant Service Guild and the Service and Food Workers’ Union.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Policy Resurgence, And Alex Chilton

For much of this year, almost all the diversity in politics has been down at the retail end, where apparent differences reside in the tone, and in details. Up at the wholesale end – in the economic settings that drive the engine of politics – the story has been of convergence, exemplified by Labour and the Greens signing up to the Budget Responsibility Rules...

However, and only three months out from the election, there is finally some genuine good news. Twice this week, Labour has released policy that has well and truly gotten up the nose of the sort of lobby groups that it has spent most of 2017 trying to cultivate. More>>

 

Right In The Thiels: Just 12 Days In NZ Before Citizenship

DIA have received advice from the Ombudsman that a detail originally redacted from the citizenship file of Peter Thiel released in January for privacy reasons should be made available by 27 July. More>>

ALSO:

Domestic Violence And Teachers: Members’ Bills Ballot

The ballot was held, and resulted in the following bills being drawn:
54 Sentencing (Domestic Violence) Amendment Bill - Hon Nanaia Mahuta
16 Education (Teaching Council of Aotearoa) Amendment Bill - Chris Hipkins More>>

ALSO:

Legislation: Point England Housing Bill Passed

The passage of the Point England Development Enabling Bill through Parliament this evening will benefit Auckland with additional housing, help resolve Ngāti Paoa’s Treaty claim and improve the local environment and recreation facilities, Building and Construction Minister Dr Nick Smith says. More>>

ALSO:

Cyberducation: Digital Curriculum Launch And Funding Package

Consultation on new digital technologies content for the New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa, the Māori-medium Curriculum, was launched today by Education Minister Nikki Kaye. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Press Conference: Red Socks And Secret Tapes

Prime Minister Bill English began his post-cabinet press conference by explaining how well the National Party's annual conference went. He also mentioned today's announcement of changes to the EQC disaster insurance legislation and wished Emirates Team New Zealand well in the America's Cup. More>>

Max Rashbrooke: On How To Make Government More Open

International surveys, while often complimentary, have also pinpointed major weaknesses: political donations are badly regulated, for instance, and appointments to government boards frequently go to those with strong political connections. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election
 
 
 
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog