19 September 2018
E tū welcomes Suffrage Day equal pay bill
E tū has welcomed the introduction to parliament today of the Equal Pay Amendment Bill, which the union believes will
ease the way for women pursuing equal pay claims.
Government Ministers, Eugenie Sage and Iain Lees-Galloway announced the new bill at a Suffrage Day petition re-enactment
at parliament by union women to mark the 125th anniversary of women’s suffrage.
The Bill preserves the Equal Pay Act 1972, which E tū has always supported.
It also includes the recommendations of the Joint Working Group on Pay Equity Principles but without the hurdles
proposed by the last Government, which would have made it very difficult for women to take equal pay cases.
“The previous government reneged on the joint working group recommendations and deliberately set it up to make it harder
for women to get equal pay,” says New Zealander of the Year and E tū equal pay pioneer, Kristine Bartlett.
Kristine, who was present at today’s announcement, says it’s the perfect way to mark the suffrage anniversary.
“It’s wonderful! That’s the great thing about it – it’s happening on this historic day,” Kristine says.
E tū’s Campaign lead organiser, Yvette Taylor says Kate Sheppard believed equal pay was the next great battle after
votes for women.
“It’s fantastic to hear about the new legislation on such a special day,” says Yvette.
“We’re pleased that it sets a lower bar for cases to progress, particularly with the parties involved able to set their
This resolves two key problems with the previous legislation,” she says.
E tū: the new union for New Zealanders
E tū has been created by the merger of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union and Service and Food Workers'
E tū represents more than 50,000 working New Zealanders in industries as diverse as aviation, construction, journalism,
food manufacturing, mining and cleaning.
By standing together in a union workers get higher wages and better conditions. As the country's largest private sector
union E tū can provide members with workplace representation, legal advice, a freephone support centre, work rights
education and broad representation through E tū's campaigning and research work.
We campaign hard for workers' rights, health and safety, a living wage for all Kiwis, and recognising high-value