Unions worried Labour may cave to pressure from NZ First

Published: Thu 13 Sep 2018 04:50 PM
Unions worried Labour may cave to pressure from NZ First
Jane Patterson, Political Editor
Unions say they're worried Labour may cave to pressure from New Zealand First and ditch a planned law change relating to Multi-Employer Collective Agreements - or MECAs.
New Zealand First has flagged concerns about legislation before the House that would prevent employers from opting out of MECA negotiations, saying such agreements may not work for businesses in the regions.
Under MECAs, unions can negotiate terms and conditions across several different companies or organisations within the same industry.
Under the National-led government employers were able to opt out at the beginning of MECA negotiations - under the proposed law change that option would be removed.
These kinds of agreements were flexible enough to suit both the regions and the big cities, said Dennis Maga from the FIRST Union.
"Every time we negotiate with employers we take into consideration the economics of companies in the regions...I don't think it should be a problem.
The PSA's Glen Barclay said MECAs were useful for ensuring all employers in a particular industry were providing fair terms and conditions, so he hoped Labour would stand strong.
"We do want these provisions to go through, we do recognise there are three parties in the government and that can lead to tensions.
"We are hopeful that New Zealand First understands the importance of this measure", he said.
National's leader Simon Bridges said there was now a clear rift within the coalition.
"People are talking about the tail wagging the dog for the first time... we're seeing on a range of things, New Zealand First at least looking like or talking like they've pulled the rug out from Labour's feet."
The Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the government was forging ahead, and any discussions about support were part and parcel of operating a coalition.
The legislation has been reported back to Parliament by select committee but as yet does not have a scheduled date for the next reading in the House - and of course that is the next time each individual party has to cast a vote, for or against.
New Zealand's public broadcaster, providing comprehensive NZ news and current affairs, specialist audio features and documentaries.
Radio New Zealand is a Crown entity established under the Radio New Zealand Act 1995. Radio New Zealand News are vital elements in our programming, providing impartial news and information to New Zealanders every day. Radio New Zealand (RNZ) provides listeners with exciting and independent radio programmes in accordance with the Radio New Zealand Charter.

Next in Comment

The End of ‘Objectivity’ in Journalism
By: Joseph Cederwall
Gordon Campbell on America’s ‘Green New Deal’
By: Gordon Campbell
Gordon Campbell on listening to Ocasio-Cortez about tax
By: Gordon Campbell
Gordon Campbell on the Nelson fire and climate change
By: Gordon Campbell
NZME targets positive earnings from paywall in 2 years
By: BusinessDesk
Gordon Campbell on National’s tax handouts
By: Gordon Campbell
Social spending and productivity may be related
By: BusinessDesk
UPDATE: Nelson fires
By: New Zealand Police
Nelson fires update – conditional re-entry for Golden Hills
By: New Zealand Police
UPDATE: Nelson fires – Conditional re-entry for Residents
By: New Zealand Police
Tasman fires - two believed deliberately lit
By: New Zealand Police
Friday morning update from Police - Nelson fires
By: New Zealand Police
Pigeon Valley residents asked to leave their homes
By: New Zealand Police
PM's Post-Cabinet Press Conference 11/2/19: Fires Response
By: The Scoop Team
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media