MEDIA RELEASE 27 November 2008
Union 'Fairness at Work' issues-based campaign to continue
The Council of Trade Unions' Fairness at Work political campaign would continue, a national meeting of the union movement in Wellington has decided today.
"Unions will continue the 'Fairness at Work' campaign's focus of protecting work rights, strengthening public services, and setting out a plan to lift wages," CTU president Helen Kelly said.
"The new government has been formed and at the moment there is an understandable focus on the immediate - the current financial crisis and the steps to be taken in the coming weeks to help New Zealand weather the storm."
"The CTU has ideas on this, and will work with the new government on what immediate steps should be taken to support workers, firms and communities during the global financial crisis."
"But we also need to look further out than the first '100 days', at aspects of the government's long term programme which we believe will be harmful for workers."
"National's confidence and supply agreement with the Act Party for example, reveals a concerning mix of further deregulation, allowing businesses to go line-by-line through the public services Kiwis expect and demand and push changes, and cutting government revenue for social services significantly through a 30 per cent tax rate."
"It is critical that workers have a direct voice in decisions which will have a big impact on their lives. The CTU acknowledges the early invitation from John Key to meet and the CTU will engage with the government on a constructive basis wherever practicable," Helen Kelly said.