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Unions Commend Government Speed In Keeping Air NZ Afloat

The Council of Trade Unions has been impressed with how quickly and decisively the Government has acted to ensure Air New Zealand can stay in operation. "This quick action provides Air New Zealand staff with some certainty in these times of unprecedented uncertainty," CTU President Richard Wagstaff said.

"We have been pleased in the way Air New Zealand has engaged with union members and officials. They have been open to true collaboration with unions and government, a model all employers should be willing to explore."

"The CTU is pleased to see the cancellation of the dividend that was due to be paid as an example of shareholders also contributing to bolstering the financial position of the company."

"In practical terms what the Government has provided today with the loan facility means that union members can feel assured that company can meet any redundancy or restructuring payments to staff.

"We will continue to encourage Air New Zealand and government to work with unions to redeploy staff to other areas of society. Air New Zealand staff are highly skilled and multi talented and those are the exact skills we need in the wider community to get us through this crisis. Air New Zealand should also look to bring overseas aircraft maintained work back to New Zealand from Singapore and using only New Zealand based crew."

"These are certainly challenging times, but they are also an opportunity to think creatively, widely and collaboratively to minimise impact on working people, business and New Zealand as a whole," Wagstaff said.

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