Labour has used its select committee majority to make the Government’s misnamed Fair Pay Agreements Bill even worse, National’s Workplace Relations & Safety spokesperson Paul Goldsmith says.
“National opposes the Bill which would force employers and workers within a sector to bargain for minimum terms and conditions for all employees in that industry or occupation, regardless of whether or not they want to be included. If enacted, this Bill will make New Zealand’s workplaces less agile and flexible and make all workers beholden to a union agenda. If it passes through Parliament, a National Government would repeal it.
“The original legislation would have forced employers to provide employee contact details to the union initiating the ‘Fair Pay Agreement’. Now, Labour has gone a step further and extended it to allow unions to use this information to recruit new members.
“No government should force employers to help unions do their marketing for them.
“This move just proves what this Bill is all about – Labour trying to prop up unions after the vast majority of Kiwi workers have voted with their feet and left them in droves.
“This Bill is an ideological overreach that will inflict more pain on employers at a time when we’re facing huge economic challenges.
“The modern workplace is changing rapidly and people value flexibility. Labour’s bill would take us in the opposite direction, towards rigid and one-size-fits-all agreements.
“A flexible labour market has been one of the foundations of New Zealand’s relative economic success. This Bill undermines that foundation and will harm our national competitiveness and our economy.
“This is classic Labour thinking that central government knows best. Employers and employees should be able to make arrangements that suit them – not hamstrung by more ideological government overreach.”