Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Luxton Warns Farming Sector Of Labour's ECA Plans

27 AUGUST 1999


Food and Fibre Minister John Luxton today warned against the dire consequences of any industrial relations policy seeking to turn the clock back to the days of strikes and lockouts, saying it would seriously harm New Zealand's vital primary industries.

"Dr Cullen's hysterical outburst in Parliament yesterday was an extraordinary sight. Clearly National struck a nerve when trying to get to the bottom of Labour's ECA policy - unless of course Dr Cullen has something to hide," said John Luxton.

"New Zealand farmers and growers have every right to know what employment policies the Labour/Alliance bloc are proposing because they will directly impact on rural communities and farming families."

"Before the ECA was introduced New Zealand was paralysed by strike action which increased the costs to farmers, crippled our agricultural industries and destroyed jobs in rural communities."

"Labour wants to repeal the Employment Contracts Act so the union movement can revitalise itself and exercise more control over everyone's lives. Labour has no hesitation in returning us to the days when the milk flowed down the drain because of strikes organised by the unions in the middle of the spring and when the lambs weren't collected because of the strikes in the meat works."

Under the ECA New Zealand has enjoyed higher levels of employment and lower levels of industrial strife, than they did under the last Labour Government. Since December 1990 when National took office, employment has grown by over 18%. In contrast in the 5 years prior under Labour, registered unemployment increased by over 106,000.

Under the ECA, industrial conflict has fallen to its lowest level since 1935. In the last 3 years, work stoppages involved about 106,000 lost working days and about $14 million in lost wages. Under Labour's last term, there were 8 1/2 times as many working days lost (905,960 days), and 7 times more lost wages ($100m).

"The Employment Contracts Act has been hugely beneficial to the farming sector. It has allowed more flexibility, encouraged modern workplace practices, boosted rural employment and incomes and contributed to the growth of food and fibre exports. Why mess with success?" Mr Luxton concluded.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Juggling Covid, And France’s Trump-like Populist

It is the age-old Covid problem. How to balance the needs for firms (and schools) to re-open against the need to protect public health. In the past, the balance has been struck by insisting that the best public health outcomes also deliver the best economic (and educational) outcomes. While that may still be objectively true, it is no longer a politically tenable position... More>>

Covid-19 & Education: NCEA And NZ Scholarship Exams To Proceed

NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams will proceed, including in areas where Alert Level 3 has been in place, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The New Zealand Qualifications Authority, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health have been working together to ensure exams can be managed in a safe way, so students have the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned... More>>


Government: New Zealand Secures Historic Free Trade Deal With The United Kingdom
New Zealand and the United Kingdom have agreed in principle the details of a historic Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which will further accelerate our COVID-19 economic recovery say Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister for Trade and Export Growth Damien O’Connor... More>>


Ombudsman: Launches Investigation Into MIQ Booking System
The Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier is launching a broad investigation into the Managed Isolation and Quarantine (MIQ) booking system after receiving hundreds of complaints... More>>


National: Launches Back In Business Plan

Leader of the Opposition Judith Collins has today launched National’s detailed plan to save livelihoods and unleash our economy in the face of the huge damage being wrought by the extended Covid lockdown... More>>


Pay Cheque To Pay Cheque: Half A Million New Zealanders Have No Savings
New findings from the Consumer NZ sentiment tracker found that 15% of New Zealanders had no savings, and a further 27% were anxious about their level of savings and would like to have more tucked away... More>>

Government: Mandatory Vaccination For Two Workforces

Large parts of two workforces critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19 will be required to be vaccinated, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Our education and health and disability workforces have done an incredible job throughout this pandemic to keep themselves and people safe,” Chris Hipkins said.... More>>

Green Party: Deeply Concerned Space Launches May Be Breaching Nuclear-free Laws

The Green Party is deeply concerned that space launches by Rocket Lab may be breaching nuclear-free laws, given our long-standing position as a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty... More>>




InfoPages News Channels