Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Bus Drivers And Supermarket Workers Will Welcome Fair Pay Agreements

Today’s long-awaited announcement that Fair Pay Agreements (FPAs) are on the way for historically underpaid workforces like bus drivers, supermarket staff, healthcare workers and cleaners is a welcome landmark and could be the beginning of reclaiming those industries from a legacy of low pay and precarity, FIRST Union said today.

FIRST Union represents bus drivers and supermarket workers nationally and will likely be beginning the FPA processes outlined by the Government after legislation passes through Parliament. Secretaries of FIRST Union outlined the potential impact of FPAs on the separate halves of the union’s membership:

"One of the major issues in bargaining fair wages with supermarkets - specifically Foodstuffs - has been the disparate approaches taken by franchise managers in different stores around the country," said Tali Williams, FIRST Union Secretary for Retail and Finance.

"Because wages aren’t bargained nationally, you end up with a situation where people do the exact same job in different parts of New Zealand for the same brand but are paid vastly different rates."

"As an example, the Pak’n’Save Richmond branch has been "negotiating" a Collective Agreement for almost five years with their workers, repeatedly offering them wages worse than they're currently on in order to frustrate them while delaying the inevitable."

"Fair Pay Agreements will finally provide a pathway to end this kind of ‘surface bargaining’ and restore consistent incomes and wages rises for supermarket workers, regardless of where they live or who they work for."

"Our 'Healthy Staffing, Healthy Stores' campaign has focused on safe staffing levels, secure hours and living wages in retail, and the FPA framework could go a long way to tackling all three issues systemically."

Jared Abbott, FIRST Union Secretary for Transport, Logistics and Manufacturing, said the bus industry was in crisis and FPAs could be the way forward on gridlocked wages and cavalier operators.

"This is necessary and long overdue in the bus sector due to the conduct of private operators and deliberate attempts made to drive down wages to bid lowest for council contracts," said Mr Abbott.

"FPAs could restore some industrial harmony to the sector too, ending years of repetitive strikes and lockouts and ensuring bus operators behave with consistency and fairness across Aotearoa."

But Mr Abbott also cautioned that the issue of contracting must be addressed immediately to avoid exploitation of existing loopholes by "predatory" employers in the wider employment world.

"Business will already have a strong voice during this process, so it’s important we deal with the fundamental issues first rather than just trying to save the status quo, which isn’t working," said Mr Abbott.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The America’s Cup, Critical Race Theory And A New, Weekly Music Playlist

So… Why don’t they just cut to the chase, and call it the Emirates Cup? As this column predicted several months ago, the next America’s Cup challenge is headed overseas. Here’s what Werewolf said back in March:
Emirates has made a major commitment to Portsmouth/Isle of Wight as a sailing centre of excellence – and voila, that’s where the next challenger of record is coming from, and where the next Cup contest could well be sailed. Such incredible luck for Emirates, right..? More>>


Marine: Wider Roll-out Of Cameras On Boats To Support Sustainability And Protect Marine Life

Up to 300 inshore commercial fishing vessels will be fitted with on-board cameras by 2024 as part of the Government’s commitment to protect the natural marine environment for future generations... More>>


Government: Plan For Vaccine Rollout For General Population Announced

New Zealanders over 60 will be offered a vaccination from July 28 and those over 55 from August 11, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today... More>>


Jewish Council: New Zealand Not Immune From Rise In Antisemitism

The representative body of New Zealand Jewry, the NZ Jewish Council (NZJC), has expressed concern about the high number of antisemitic incidents in New Zealand recorded last month. Spokesperson for the NZJC, Juliet Moses, said... More>>

NZNO: Nurses Reject DHB Offer And Confirm Strike Action

The New Zealand Nurses Organisation says its 30,000 members who work in DHBs have voted overwhelmingly to reject a second offer in their current round of multi-employer collective agreement (MECA) negotiations... More>>





InfoPages News Channels