16 August 2005
National to fund tax cuts with workers’ lives
The National Party wants to reverse health and safety legislation and systems that have dramatically reduced workplace fatalities by 60% over the past two years.
“It is clear that a National Government elected on a bribe of tax cuts would be at the cost of workers’ lives,” said CTU president Ross Wilson.
Not only will National increase workplace deaths but they will also put themselves on a collision course with employers if they do this, he said.
“The NZ Construction Industry Council, for instance, has credited the CTU health and safety representative system with a drop in building site deaths from 18 per 100,000 workers in 1996 to 5 per 100,000 workers last year.”
More than 13,000 workers in a range of industries have trained under the CTU site safety representative scheme.
“National’s Wayne Mapp doesn’t seem to understand that the current system relies on informed cooperation between employers and workers.”
“The CTU and Business NZ are currently developing a joint Stage 3 course for health and safety representatives,” Ross Wilson concluded.