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715% Increase in Work Days Lost to Strikes

715% Increase in Work Days Lost to Strikes

Thursday 10 Oct 2002 Richard Prebble Press Releases -- Employment

The dramatically rising trend in the number of strikes noted in the latest work stoppage statistics is a major concern, ACT leader Richard Prebble said today.

"This is overwhelming evidence that the government's Employment Relations Act has encouraged strike action and thwarted the ability of businesses to grow strongly," Mr Prebble said.

"Since 1999, the number of stoppages has increased by nearly 6%. This equates to a dramatic rise of 715% in person days of work lost.

"Worse is still to come with Labour's intention to expand the grounds on which strikes are permitted.

"Minister of Labour, Margaret Wilson is discussing new legislation with unions which will legalise political, social and economic strikes. If legislation like this was successfully introduced it would exacerbate the situation.

"Under Labour's new laws, for example, it would have been possible for the New Zealand Watersiders Union to go out in sympathy with the West Coast port workers recent stoppage in the United States.

"The Health and Safety in Employment Bill, and the proposed holidays and pay equity bills will further cripple business - particularly small business - in New Zealand," Mr Prebble said.


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