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CTU Launches National Appeal For Sanford Workers

The CTU will tomorrow officially launch a national appeal for financial assistance for the workers involved in industrial action at fish processing company Sanford's in Timaru and Bluff.

"As these workers near the end of their fifth week outside the factory gates we are very concerned that the company continues to prolong this dispute," CTU Secretary Paul Goulter said today.

"We are now asking unions and others to respond with financial support in order to ensure that these workers are not starved into accepting an unjust settlement.

"We are very disappointed that the Department of Work and Income has decided to discontinue the emergency benefit for Sanford's workers involved in industrial action. We hope that the company was not involved in that decision", Mr Goulter said.

After two weeks of accepting hardship cases for the emergency benefit, DWI last week discontinued assistance. All workers involved are appealing the decision.

"At an average starting rate of $9.54 per hour the Sanford workers are paid about $2.00 less than the industry standard. Just $2.00 from every union member can put food on the tables of Sanford workers," Mr Goulter continued.

"Unfortunately, it is just because the company has succeeded for a long time in imposing low wages on its workers and extracting large profits that its actions in prolonging the dispute are possible."

CTU Vice President and Service and Food Workers Union National Secretary, Darien Fenton will lead the launch which will take place as part of a picket of Sanford's head office in Auckland tomorrow.

The picket will start at 12 noon tomorrow 27 July at 77 Fanshawe St, Auckland City and march down to Sanford's Head Office at 22 Jellicoe Road.

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