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

 

MPs agree there’s much more to do on safety in forestry

MPs agree there’s much more to do on safety in the forestry sector

Politicians have responded with shock to revelations from forestry and wood processing workers at a symposium on the future of work in the industry.

FIRST Union’s Forestry & Wood Processors Symposium 2018 was attended by Union members, delegates and officials, Green Party leader Marama Davidson and Labour list MP in Tauranga Jan Tinetti. The symposium also hosted a panel of industry leaders including WPMA’s Dr. Jon Tanner, Refining NZ Chief Executive Mike Fuge, Professor Göran Roos from Intellectual Capital Services and Greenpeace Executive Director Dr Russel Norman.

Workers told the panels they felt an increase in fatalities in the industry is due to a combination of issues deriving from the competitive contracting models used in forest. They cited decreases in training programmes and an increased pressure to work longer hours and to produce products faster.

FIRST Union Divisional Secretary Jared Abbott, who hosted the event, says suggestions from workers and union delegates made to the panel included several features.

“Workers who had been introduced to the industry through decent jobs in silviculture decades ago were concerned that work conditions around pay and safety had got so bad the sector can only attract migrant workers to fulfil the needs. Workers and officials also voiced the need for the Learners Advisory Group (previously part of the Tertiary Education Commission) to be reinstated to ensure workers have better representation in the training process that includes health and safety.”



MPs were shocked to hear about how the fragmentation and privatisation of business in the forestry sector has contributed to a lowering of wages, work conditions and wellbeing of workers in the industry. They were concerned to hear processes implemented in an attempt to reintroduce more safety measures has only created more red-tape for forestry workers to implement, yet the fatalities continue.

Mr Abbott says workers remain angry and it’s clear large-scale change is needed.

“The reaction from the panel from workers who’re visibly frustrated has given us renewed hope that workers on the ground will be listened to. It’s clear the hands-off approach doesn’t work and recent attempts to reinstall more safety measures didn’t fix fundamental problems caused by the insecurity of work due to sub-contracting. Workers and groups of workers need to be relieved of the competitive measures that are driving the unsafe behaviour and lack of worker engagement in health and safety initiatives for real change to happen.”


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

SCOOP COVERAGE: CHRISTCHURCH MOSQUES TERROR ATTACK


'Public Safety': Next Firearms Reform Plan Announced

The next Arms Amendment Bill will:

• Establish a register of firearms and licence holders to be rolled out over 5 years
• Tighten the rules to get and keep a firearms licence
• Tighten the rules for gun dealers to get and keep a licence
• Require licences to be renewed every five years
• Introduce a new system of warning flags so Police can intervene and seek improvement if they have concerns about a licence holder’s behaviour
• Prohibit visitors to New Zealand from buying a gun... More>>

 

Ihumātao Development: Protesters Served Eviction Notices

Ihumātao is next to the Ōtuataua Stonefields Historic Reserve in Māngere, home to New Zealand's earliest market gardens and a significant archaeological site on land considered wāhi tapu (sacred) by local hapū and iwi. More>>

Separation: Law Commission Recommends New Law For Dividing Property

The Law Commission recommends a range of changes to make the law fairer for partners dividing property on separation. More>>

ALSO:

'ClimbIt Crisis: Greenpeace Climbers Seek OMV Majestic Centre HQ

The two Greenpeace climbers who are scaling the outside of the tallest building in Wellington have unfurled the first of a series of banners. More>>

ALSO:

Suspect Was Also Kicked: Shots Fired To Warn Fleeing Driver Not Justified

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that an officer's decision to fire three warning shots to stop a fleeing driver from reversing towards him was not justified. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Being Australia's Pacific Go-Fers

Inevitably, there was an aspect of ‘what might have been’ about the weekend’s meeting in Canberra between PM Jacinda Ardern and her Australian counterpart, Scott Morrison... More>>

ALSO:

RNZ: Trades Hall Bombing Case Re-Opened, Evidence Released

The cold case has been reopened and the police have recently revealed more details about the bomb's components - including that it was wrapped in a 1977 edition of The Evening Post. More>>

Safety: Govt Targets Fewer Deaths On The Road

“Most roads deaths and serious injuries are preventable and too many New Zealanders have lost their lives or been seriously injured in crashes that could have been prevented by road safety upgrades,” said Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Rise Delay: Teachers Unions Plan Legal Action Against Novopay

Both of the teachers unions - NZEI and the PPTA - have confirmed they will be taking legal action against Novopay. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels