Govt To Protect Security Guards
Hon Michael Wood
Minister for Workplace Relations and
The Government is delivering on a key commitment to better protect security guards’ pay and conditions by adding them to Schedule 1A of the Employment Relations Act, Workplace Relations Minister Michael Wood announced today.
“Security guards protect us and our property - it’s time we protect their hard-won employment conditions. Our Government recognises we need to support them given they are on the front lines keeping our managed isolation facilities secure.
“The industry is highly competitive and prone to restructuring, which means security guards can find themselves being made redundant without compensation, or being taken up by a new contractor where they lose their entitlements and offered worse pay and conditions.
“With these new protections, the 7,800 security guards nationwide will be able to keep their jobs and retain their pay rates and conditions when a business is sold or restructured. This will help stop the race to the bottom where companies are undercutting each other and lead to an industry that competes on service quality, which helps the companies already offering good conditions.
“I want to acknowledge E tū for their advocacy on this issue and they have helped secure a win for the people who watch out for all of us.
“The required Order in Council to make this change will now be drafted and the change is expected to be in force by mid-2021, which gives the industry time to adjust,” Michael Wood said.
The Employment Relations Act gives certain specified categories of workers, such as cleaners and caterers, additional employment protections when a business is sold or restructured. These workers are provided extra protections because they lack bargaining power and work in sectors with frequent restructuring, which can undermine their working conditions and put their job at risk.