We can have better work lives in New Zealand. A good way to do that is better employment law that’s fairer for everyone. The Council of Trade Unions has shown what that should look like in a recent report - A Framework for Fairness. And now the Government has finally released its response to the Fair Pay Agreement Working Group report (that, itself, was released in 2018)... and they want to consult some more.
That’s fine - apart from the fact that some of the options they are consulting on would substantially weaken working people’s ability to improve their pay and conditions.
Now we have just SIX WEEKS to ensure that we get the law we need for all Kiwis. And we need your help.
There are some basic principles of fairness that should not be up for grabs. That’s why we released our Framework for Fairness outlining these principles and it’s why we are asking you and every other person who believes in a fair deal to tell the Government to get this law right.
To the Prime Minister and Cabinet:
It’s time to do the right thing by working people, and the many good employers in New Zealand, and deliver us Fair Pay Agreements. We need Fair Pay Agreement law that makes life better for working Kiwis. We can’t continue with the low-wage, low-training, model that has cost us all so much.
The law our elected leaders make to do this must abide by six basic principles of good sector bargaining:
1) Fair Pay Agreements will enable working people to improve their terms and conditions of employment, develop their skills and have these skills recognised.
2) Working people will have a voice through their unions to negotiate Fair Pay Agreements.
3) Fair Pay Agreements should cover every person working and every employer in a defined industry or occupation.
4) Fair Pay Agreements need to be about more than pay rates – they need to provide a minimum standard for decent incomes, career pathways and good working lives for New Zealanders.
5) If union members and employers in an industry or sector can’t agree on what’s fair, they will be able to go through an independent assessment process to determine a Fair Pay Agreement.
6) If a Fair Pay Agreement is reached, it should be final.
Working people and their families have waited too long for a fair bargaining system. Please, take this incredibly important step to get the Government honour their promise to working people.