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


Union releases Work Passport for Migrant Workers

Union releases Work Passport for Migrant Workers following Government announcement on workgroup

FIRST Union and its affiliates; the Union Network of Migrants (UNEMIG) and the Indian Workers’ Association (IWA) have released a handbook for migrant workers in New Zealand to share with their friends and families to help protect migrant workers against exploitation at its biennial conference today in Auckland.

The New Zealand Migrant Workers’ Rights Passport (MWRP) will be given out to all migrant workers already a part of FIRST Union and its affiliate networks; UNEMIG and IWA. It contains information on employment rights for migrants, collective agreements, and legal and mental health support services. The MWRP will act as a work guide and vital connection point for migrants so they can safely work in New Zealand. We encourage the MWRP booklets to be shared amongst all workers and we encourage staff to join us by signing up to UNEMIG at http://unemig.org.nz/join-us/

The Government has also today made several announcements at the conference regarding its review of the exploitation of migrants in New Zealand. A consultation group representing migrants, businesses, unions and international students has now been established. Additionally, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has been instructed to undertake in-depth research on temporary migrant worker exploitation in New Zealand.

FIRST Union General Secretary Dennis Maga says New Zealand’s exploitation of migrants is unacceptable.

“Whenever our authorities look into it they find gross exploitation of workers’ rights that seriously affects their ability to live a safe and happy life. When this occurs it financially ruins rather than helps workers and it has left some people in abhorrent work situations that greatly affect their mental and physical wellbeing. This has gone on for too long and enough is enough.”

Mr Maga says the Union is aware of exploitation occurring in horticulture, retail, hospitality, transport, and factories and distribution centres in several sectors.

“Our Union, and Unions in other sectors, see this kind of exploitation across many industries. We see unethical employers using clever ways to scoot around employment law through the use of labour-hire workers or simply writing up a contract that looks as though the worker is on a good rate when in fact they are earning far less in reality. So these employers know the law well and they should know better.”

He applauds the present Government’s pro-active approach.

“It’s a relief that we now have a Government that is taking the exploitation of migrant workers seriously. There are still many companies operating in the country that claim to have a worker shortage, when in fact they are paying depressive pay rates in working conditions New Zealanders simply won’t put up with.”

Mr Maga says the MWRP aims to beef up worker knowledge, safety and autonomy while the Government conducts its review.

“We know all the tricks unethical businesses use to get cheap labour so our Migrant Workers’ Passport aims to act as a preventative document to these tactics while the issue is under review.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

a well

Wellness: Gordon Campbell On Ardern, Davos, And Wellbeing

The word “well-being” has a nice warm ring to it. So much so that the ‘wellbeing budget’ being touted by PM Jacinda Ardern at the rich folks’ club in Davos, Switzerland sounds more like a marketing slogan than an actual policy initiative.

Still, it is just as easy to forget that GDP – the common measure of how well an economy is performing – is also a marketing device. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Why Shipping Is NZ’s New Trade Problem

So Jacinda Ardern and Theresa May have signed a piece of paper promising peace in our time when it comes to our trade with Britain... Brexit is not the only concern. More>>


Reshuffle: National Announces Spokesperson For Drug Reform

National Leader Simon Bridges has appointed Paula Bennett to the new position of Spokesperson for Drug Reform as the Government pushes ahead with its agenda of drug decriminalisation, to signal National’s commitment to holding them to account. More>>


KiwiBailed: KiwiBuild Head Officially Resigns

The head of Kiwibuild, Stephen Barclay has officially resigned from the role. In a statement issued on his behalf, it was announced that he would step down from today [Friday]. More>>


Welfare Stats: Rise In Hardship Numbers Shows Income Inadequacy

The latest Ministry of Social Development quarterly report show that a record number of people have received hardship assistance from work and income, with an additional 40,000 hardship payments made between September and December 2018, compared to the previous quarter of the same year... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On MBIE’s Social Media Scam

Given the ambit of MBIE’s work, almost any form of social activity could qualify as being part of MBIE’s brief, so the privacy threats posed by this training programme are extensive. The current oversight safeguards seem threadbare to non-existent. More>>


JusTrade: New Campaign For A 21th Century Trade Agenda

‘Critique is no longer enough. If anything is to really change, we need to step away from the existing framework and take a first-principles approach to rethinking what will work for the 21st century.’ More>>


Gordon Campbell: Thompson + Clark Are The Tip Of The Iceberg

How can we tell where and how any lines are being drawn? Oversight is not exactly robust. If it were, Thompson + Clark would have been out of contention for state security work ten years ago. More>>




InfoPages News Channels