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Every worker will be affected by employment law changes

31 October 2014

Media Release

Every worker will be affected by employment law changes

Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU.

The Employment Relations Amendment Bill passed its third reading yesterday and will come into force early next year.

“Along with removing basic protections around tea breaks, this bill undermines collective bargaining, ultimately driving down real wages and work conditions. It makes it harder for workers to challenge unfair dismissals,” says Bill Newson, EPMU national secretary.

“Despite its own Cabinet paper saying parts of the bill are likely to hurt workers starting new jobs, despite all evidence that Kiwis need a real wage increase, and despite thousands of submissions from ordinary Kiwi workers opposing it, National has pushed ahead with this draconian law.

“At this point, the best protection any worker has against this law is to join their union. It sounds self-serving, but it’s a fact.

“Union members on collective agreements get rest breaks, regular pay rises, and support in employment issues.

“All workers should have those protections. It’s in every worker’s interest to join their union, stand together with their co-workers, and demand a fair go at work.”

ENDS


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