EMBARGOED UNTIL 3.15 pm, 18 OCTOBER 2011
CTU Media Release
18 October 2011
CTU Welcomes plan to lift wages
CTU President Helen Kelly welcomes the Labour Party wages policy announced today as a real and realistic plan for a fairer system to lift workers wages and combat inequality.
Speaking from the launch of the policy, Helen Kelly said “the policy announced by Phil Goff today gives every worker the opportunity to have a say on their wages and conditions and meets New Zealand’s obligations to the International Labour Organisation. Around the world, the reduction of the right to collective bargaining is directly correlated with the growing gap between rich and poor and the decline in living standards for working people.”
“Previous industrial relations policies give the impression that collective bargaining is possible but workers around the country know that it is a pipe dream in most situations outside of the traditional industries. For most workers all their terms and conditions are determined unilaterally by their employer and have little relation to affordability, productivity or the cost of living. The policy announced today will give workers the genuine choice of being covered by a collective which will directly relate to the standard terms and conditions already established in the industry and employers within an industry that use exploitative terms and conditions to compete with good employers, will no longer be able to do that.”
“Like other Labour policies previously announced – this policy is a sea change for working people – it will help reduce private borrowing and debt and increase savings – it is the third leg of the stool for economic recovery.”
“Working New Zealanders have a real choice on 26 November – a National led government that is promising further reductions to work rights and has overseen a reduction in wages, savings and health and safety, or a Labour led government that has recognised that everyone is part of this country and deserves a fair go at work,” said Helen Kelly.