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CHEP employees have gone on an indefinite strike. Bargaining began in June 2021.
Fred A – bargaining has dragged on for close on a year. Australian owned CHEP seems to have taken an adversarial approach. FIRST Union is intent to continue striking until agreement is reached. Watch this space!
After announcing the strike for 10,000 health workers, the employment court will announce its rule on Thursday for a delay on the strike. The planned nationwide strike would see hospital, community and outpatient services postponed for 24 hours – this includes processing COVID-19 tests however Allied health staff have said they would ensure that life-preserving services would still be available.
Fred A – strike is on hold, but the discontent is growing. We expect this to explode into a major confrontation as COVID restrictions lift.
CHEP and their Employees have come to an agreement after months of negotiations and over a fortnight on strike.
The new agreement includes pay increases, overtime, and a sign-on bonus, as well as for majority of the staff, living wage or more, being back paid.
Fred A – the strike is over, agreement reached, union and workers very happy. The settlement is very much in line with what is happening across the rest of NZ. In hindsight was it worth the fight?
After National Leader Christopher Luxon’s speech, Craig Renney – Chief Economist CTU has this to say: “N ational Leader Christopher Luxon’s speech today proposed an economic agenda that is out of touch and would only boost debt, pump up inflation and make it harder for middle income and working New Zealanders to get ahead… . The inequity involved in providing those at the top with yet higher incomes, whilst being unable to agree on a Minimum Wage increase is startling. Especially as those with the highest incomes have faced a much lower rate of inflation over the past ten years.”
The speech proposed removing the 39% tax bracket – which would benefit 3% of income earners in New Zealand.
Fred A – hmmm is this not what Trump implemented? Power to the rich. It highlights the stark difference between conservatives and liberal thinking in NZ
Braemar hospital in Hamilton has become the first hospital to become an accredited living wage employer – all employees – including cleaning, housekeepers, kitchen and contracted staff will receive the living wage of $22.75.
Fred A – makes sense, given the shortage of staff and skills in NZ.
Air New Zealand cabin crew and inflight crew trainers have issued strike notice over wages in the new collective agreement. The crew are asking for at least living wage.
Fred A – this dispute has been going on since 2019. At face value, wages seem low for the type of work done. However, Air NZ doesn’t have the cash to top up wages. Classic case of stalemate. Fortunately for the company, dissatisfied employees have nowhere else to go, unless they change careers or move offshore.
The Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS) have done research which shows that female specialists in public hospitals are paid 12.5% less than their male colleagues with the gap widening for female specialists with children.
The ASMS want the DHB’s to address the gender pay gap and state the DHB’s have a legal obligation to ensure equal pay (The equal pay act has been in place since 1972)
Fred A – wow this is a disgrace. Makes a strong case for public salary transparency
Some MIQ hotel employees are considering strike action after learning their $80 weekly allowances will be ending in June and their wage rates reducing from living wage back to minimum wages.
Fred A – with MIQ being phased out over the next couple of months hotel workers will be returning to their usual pay rates. Unite Union is trying to negotiate deal
NZ GDP growth increased by 5% with growth in the 13 out of 16 sectors. It was noticed in contruction, wholesale trade and retail & accommodation. Business investment grew by 14.2% annually and the household consumption rose 8%. This GDP growth is the fastest growth rate since June 202 and shows that the economy has been resilient through the phases of COVID-19 outbreaks, and is doing better than many other countries.
Fred A – good news overall. But interest rates are still going up, food prices are at record levels. Seems like very mixed indicators currently.
Rydges Auckland has confirmed to pay living wage rates of $22.75 permanently
Fred A – Well done Rydges! Good news for staff.
Some workers are left with little sick leave after depleting their leave whilst isolating with COVID-19. Countdown workers have spoken out and are launching a petition to bring back the COVID leave entitlement after countdown removed this entitlement in February.
Fred A – Countdown is arguing that if employees need sick leave but have non left due to COVID, the company will consider discretionary leave on a case-by-case basis. Inconstant application and perceptions of unfairness will become the focus for employees and the union.
The long awaited Fair pay agreements bill has been introduced with aims that it will pass into law later this year.
This proposed law now excludes contractors and will allow for some regional differences in agreements.
Fred A – Still too much uncertainty of how this will work practically. In its current state, the bill is unwieldly and requires much more robust process and simplification. Given that in Australia, were they have a similar system in place, there is huge pressure on the government to simplify their industry wide Awards system, because it is administratively too time consuming, not well understood by employers, unions & employees. Why are we proposing something in NZ that has failed in Australia?
“A union is hitting back at recent claims by kiwifruit employers that wages are now as high as $60 an hour, calling it “total nonsense””
First union have said that most seeka employees have not been given a pay rise that matches inflation and claiming that they only have themselves to blame over the so-called labour shortage.
Fred A – Seeka and First Union are currently in CA bargaining. This has triggered a war of words in the media as to current pay rates. Classic case of a union using the media to pressure the company.