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Insecure work in NZ’s precariat

Written By: - Date published: 8:48 am, October 9th, 2013 - 108 comments
Categories: employment, quality of life, unemployment, Unions, workers' rights - Tags: ,

A recent study gives a strong indication of the extent of, and the recent increases in, insecure work in NZ.  It is being released at the CTU conference today, along with the launch of  a campaign to improve worker security. Simon Collins in today’s NZ Herald reports that the study largely draws on 2 Statistics NZ surveys conducted in March 2008 and December 2012.  The study says:

temporary work, unemployment and the numbers of “permanent” workers fearing they may lose their jobs have all increased as employers strive to make work more “flexible”.

The study cannot be directly compared with a recent Australian study, which found 40% of Aussie workers are “insecure”, because of differences in the way workers were categorised.  In the NZ study:

“The NZ data takes no account of ‘dependent’ contractors (employees of an employer skirting the law by defining its workers as ‘independent contractors’), who are included in the Australian count,” he said.

The headline figure – that “at least 30 per cent of our workforce are insecure” – is based on an unusual measure of the workforce that includes the unemployed but excludes employers.

Temporary employees increased from 7.7 per cent of the workforce in 2008 to 8.6 per cent last December, the unemployed jumped from 4.5 per cent to 7.2 per cent, and “permanent” employees who said they had a medium to high chance of losing their jobs in the next year rose from 9.3 per cent to 12.6 per cent.

The total of “workers most at risk” increased from 21.5 per cent of the non-employer workforce to 28.4 per cent.

While the exact proportion of “insecure” workers is not clear, the changes in temporary employment and unemployment do show an increase in job insecurity.  The proportion of self-employed people has also decreased, while it is unclear how many of the currently self-employed are at risk of going out of business.

Many of the main offenders in providing insecure work are fast food businesses, while education was the sector that employed the highest proportion of temporary workers.  Furthermore, a higher proportion of women are in insecure work compared with men.  This is in-keeping with the way capitalism has treated women for over a century.

In reporting on the NZ  study, TVNZ states:

… there is job uncertainty, low and variable earnings, inadequate sick leave, increased health and safety risks and little training or career development.

They then report of the different explanations of the 90 day employment law, with the CTU and business NZ claiming different general results.

“Your rights are basically removed – the right to fair dismissal, fair treatment,” said Helen Kelly of the CTU.

That includes the Government’s 90-day employment trial which allows both parties to walk away.

Since it was introduced four years ago, more than 11,000 employers have used it.

Business New Zealand says there are very few complaints about the trial system.

“We’re seeing very few complaints from anybody very much. And what’s more, we’re seeing really, really good feedback from employers,” said Phil O’Reilly of Business NZ.

The CTU claims employers are opting for the low road of driving down costs rather than investing in workers.

Helen Kelly says much of the insecure work is “just a rouse” by employers.

“It’s not necessary. The work is continuing, the work is permanent,” she said.

Chloe Sifflett, a 21-year-old fastfood worker, says employers “think they can just hire new people and forget about the people they already have.”

Business New Zealand does not agree about the extent of the problem, but is worried for some.

“With that cohort of people who really are struggling at the bottom of the labour market, what we need to do with them is invest a lot in them in terms of their skills,” Phil O’Reilly said.

So Phil O’Reilly does accept there is a problem of worry about security, while talking down its extent, and ignoring the issue of keeping workers on long term “temporary” contracts, when the work is on-going, and thus should be classed as permanent.

Helen Kelly tweeted that, with today’s announcement of the study, the CTU will be launching a campaign.

Helen kelly tweet 09102013

It is important for the well being of all Kiwis, that paid work is secure and provides a living wage.  I look forward to seeing the details of the CTU campaign.

[Update]: Cunliffe to CTU on Labour pledges -(h/t bad12)

NZ Herald report on Cunlife’s speech to the CTU today:

In his opening remarks to the conference, Mr Cunliffe told the meeting: “I want to reaffirm I’m here as part of the labour movement”.

[...]

That included raising the minimum wage immediately to $15 an hour if Labour was elected next year, supporting the “Living Wage” campaign, putting it in place immediately for public sector workers, and extending paid parental leave from 14 to 26 weeks.

Mr Cunliffe also pledged to “scrap National’s unfair employment law changes in the first 100 days”.

He took aim at the “fire at will” legislation, “attacks on collective bargaining”, the undermining of health and safety, and moves “taking away smoko breaks”.

 “The Prime Minister’s attacks on workers will be gone by lunchtime.”

He promised “a red Labour Party” rather than a “pale blue” one.

And on Scoop

108 comments on “Insecure work in NZ’s precariat”

  1. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 1

    Helen Kelly says much of the insecure work is “just a rouse” by employers.

    Who is being woken up?

  2. Sable 2

    No negative feedback from employers, well that’s hardly surprising, is it? As to employee complaints, with no rights its easy to fire some who who upsets the apple cart so best to say nothing.

    New Zealand’s labour laws are slowly being remolded in such a way that they drag us back into a Dickensian past/future where people are just commodities to be used and discarded at will with no consideration of rights or innate human value.

  3. Tracey 3

    No wonder business confidence is rising.

  4. Rhinocrates 4

    I do a job that requires high qualifications and skills, but I have zero security and have to reapply every few months, subject to the whims of budget and policy despite all the reviews (and overheard comments) that I get being highly positive. As a result, my anxiety disorder, which requires constant prescription medication, has got worse in ways I won’t describe.

    Do you know what I want most?

    A cat.

    Pets are very therapeutic, proven to aid mental health, but I don’t have the financial security to take on the responsibility of being staff for such a famously independent animal long-term. Instead I take the pills my doctor prescribes.

    A family or owning a home?

    Not even considered.

    As for WINZ or whatever they’re called this week? Bennett’s little arse kissers, the new staff, just say “that’s seasonal work and you shouldn’t depend on it, I’m going to recommend that you’re ineligible for support because of your choice.”

    I’m not moaning, so no sarcastic “boo hoo”… instead I’m warning you that you’re next. You will be, that’s for sure.

    • Chooky 4.1

      @ Rhinocrates….that is awful you not being able to afford a cat!…….Why dont you board with a cat loving house owner.?…It always surprises me that my cat loving friends live in big houses by themselves and their cats ( they prefer living with cats rather than running the risk of living with people….and they like living alone.)..however I am sure if you advertised you would find a room in a house with a cat lover who is also a house owner…and it might work out very well……after all people like to go on holiday and if there is a backup “cat- sitter” it could be very convenient indeed

      ….also I have noticed that people who love cats tend to get along very well….cat psychology

      …you could advertise at vets …or SPCA…or Grey Power…or anywhere….for board with a cat lady…or cat man

    • greywarbler 4.2

      Rhinocrates
      It is possible now to see how Hi…ler built up his regime – how people can be co-opted out of personal bias, financial necessity etc into being thoroughly unpleasant, callous people doing rotten things to other people.

      Chooky’s idea sounds good. Let us know if it works.

      • Rhinocrates 4.2.1

        Thanks, but well, I’m a high-functioning autist, so sharing my space with anyone with whom I’m not deeply intimate is impossible and bad for my health.

        Squeezing toothpaste tubes at the wrong end is not a problem – simply existing is a problem!

        Strangely, put me in a lecture theatre with an audience of three hundred and I’ll love it and I’ll literally get applauded and even a tutorial with a dozen will likewise go just as well. I have annually seen surveys of my performance and always I score highest in terms of knowledge and respect. However, I cannot get a teurable position… but then for all the stereotypes, academia is a really hard environment, so all this talk about “ivory towers’ is bullshit. Just try getting on the stairs to that ivory tower!

        Prostetnic Vogon Joyce epitomises petty, banal jealousy. He doesn’t see excellence or virtue or dedication…. he only sees immediate financial utility. Universities to him are high schools crossed with research institutes.

        That said, I know all the cats in my neighbourhood, especially a Siamese called Sami, with whom I have a good friendship along the lines of, in her mind I think, “Oh yeah, him. Nice guy, a good bodyguard, he stays by me while I explore the other cats’ territories.”.

        There was this Tuxedo who tried to adopt me, but her humans moved away, taking her with them, alas.

        • Chooky 4.2.1.1

          OK …well maybe you need a bedsit out the back like Janet Frame had with Frank Sargeson…advertise for this at a cat lovers/owners address

          • Rhinocrates 4.2.1.1.1

            Hi Chooky… the fact is, I have a very nice flat with lots of greenery and dinosaurs (well, we call them “birds” now) around me. That’s one of the advantages of Aro Valley – you can pretend that you’re living in a calm, clear, green countryside. It’s only weird in that I have to climb four flights of stairs to get to what is technically a basement. :)

        • Tracey 4.2.1.2

          Remembering how long it took Joyce to get his degree…

          • Rhinocrates 4.2.1.2.1

            I could draw a nice Venn diagram of overlapping circles to describe various ministers of education. One circle is “Bastard” and the other is “Idiot”. Goff, I’ll grant was not an idiot*, merely a mediocrity, but certainly is a bastard. Hipkins, if he will get that role, will follow in his footsteps. Russell Marshall, for those who remember, was not a bastard, but certainly an idiot, while the late and unlimited Merv Wellington was both… as is Prostetnic Vogon Joyce.

            As for Tolley and Parata, need I elaborate?

            *Come to think of it, his performance as Labour “leader” showed some pretty idiotic qualities almost as bad as those of Shearer, the only man who could make him look good…

            • Rhinocrates 4.2.1.2.1.1

              And as for Lackwit Smirk, well…

            • Chooky 4.2.1.2.1.2

              @ Rhino….have to agree with your analysis of the Education Ministers….and Joyce is despicable!……

              .Labour Party should employ you as an adviser on Tertiary Education!!!( someone should tell Cunliffe this)

      • Chooky 4.2.2

        @ greywarbler and Rhinocrates

        I would say that whatever party went for Gareth Morgan’s Universal Basic Income “the big kahuna”….would be BIG winner at the next election!

        …… In fact I think the time has now come for a campaign around this issue.( To hell with big motorways!…people first!)

        http://www.bigkahuna.org.nz/

        http://www.bigkahuna.org.nz/universal-basic-income.aspx

        • Rhinocrates 4.2.2.1

          Morgan’s an interesting fellow indeed. Superficially a righty, his world travels seem to have opened his eyes. As an ailurophile (cat lover), I take objection to his recent campaign, but on a lot of points he makes surprising sense.

          Proof, I think, that if someone’s wrong about one thing (e.g. cats), they might be right about something else.

    • Mary 4.3

      I think that unless the dwelling you’re currently in isn’t suitable you should get a cat. They adapt to moving far more easily than many people think and as you say they’re good for mental health. Much easier to keep with you when you shift than a dog. So get a cat. Cats are very good.

      • Chooky 4.3.1

        +1 Mary….cats aren’t too expensive and they can always eat mice…and bits from the dinner table (also local cafes would give scraps) ….and naughty , naughty …the occasional birdie….(Rhino has lots of them flying around thanks to the Wildlife Sanctuary))…but don’t tell Gareth ( I think the most endangered species are not killed by cats anyway …but by 1080….and humans encroaching on their habitats)

        Rhino you should get two cats!

        • Mary 4.3.1.1

          Yes, two cats. Cats need good other cat company, too. Two cats are better than one. I also think two cats are better than three. So, two cats, please.

          • Rhinocrates 4.3.1.1.1

            I have mice… wondering if I should “adopt” them as I adopted the spiders rather than worrying about them. Jumping spiders – Trite planiceps – now they’re cute!

            • Chooky 4.3.1.1.1.1

              Keep them all ( spiders, cats and mice) as pets is my advice( rats also make good pets)….although the cats will get the mice and rats….My sister and her boyfriend, years ago, up the top of Semeloff Tce had a pet possum in the wall ….they knew he/she was home sleeping when they could see his/her fur sticking out of a hole the size of a 50 cent piece in the wall….The occasional poke at possum didnt seem to disrupt his/her slumbers.

              It was an interior artistic feature of their place in Aro Valley tree tops

  5. Tracey 5

    I hear you loud and clear rhino. Its not moaning its the reality of life for much of nz. Nothing to do with skills or work ethic but a constantly squeezed labour market cinsistently ubder valued.

    nz workers are the new “unpaid worker” in terms of respect and liveability. It used to be trying to put a value on unpaid work. Now we are under valuing those who work while telling them to be grateful for anything.

    I work contracts and they stop on a whim.

    • Rhinocrates 5.1

      It’s old but it’s true, Marilyn Waring’s Counting for Nothing, which shows that the capitalist “free” economy depends on unpaid labour, particularly that of women. Ironically is was she, that as a National MP, brought down Muldoon.

      • Tracey 5.1.1

        Exactly, I have just mentioned her in another thread. WAY ahead of her time in economic terms and therefore largely disregarded here. A Canadian company had to do a documentary on her… no interest here.

        • Rhinocrates 5.1.1.1

          She’s an unrecognised national treasure and feminist thinker, honoured everywhere but in her home land.

          • Anne 5.1.1.1.1

            Interesting piece of background knowledge concerning Marilyn Waring. She and Helen Clark grew up in the same part of the Waikato. I think they may have even attended the same schools. Even though one joined the Labour Party and the other the National Party, they always had a great deal of respect for one another. The night Helen Clark and Labour won the 1999 election, Marilyn was one of the first – if not the first – visitor to her home early in the evening to congratulate her.

        • Chooky 5.1.1.2

          +1 Tracey and Rhino…on Marilyn Waring ….she is a thinking economist…rather than an ineffectual tinkerer….and unsung in NZ

    • Rhinocrates 5.2

      There are many of the Old Left, such as Chris Trotter, who rightfully talk about the needs of the working class, but postmodern capitalism wants to make the “middle class”, or rather “human resources”, a pool of working class, no matter what their qualifications and aspirations/ashpurashuns. People like him mean well, and have good things to say, but they need to advance from the 1920s and see what capitalism is doing in the 21st century.

  6. Rogue Trooper 6

    from the research by VU; “temporary employees in NZ have less legal protection than in almost all developed countries”.
    anyway, almost a third (likely to be more, if ‘employers’ considered) of Kiwis unemployed or engaged in insecure employment.
    The Future’s so bright, we have to pull down the shades.

    • Tracey 6.1

      BUT business is confidant and CEO’s are getting decent pay rises. I don’t get what people are upset about It’s only a matter of time until they put their workers wages up.

  7. bad12 7

    An army of cleaners, nightly, as we slumber, toiling for their daily bread 13-14 dollar an hour, 2 ,3 and 4 jobs to manage, instead of the one,

    As we dine out, via the profits garnered from having paid for,(earned), our Uni degrees, another small army scrape away the scrime, the pot wallopers and dish washer drivers all paid the bare minimum, many,(most),silently accomplishing the labour out-put of 2,

    But then how would they know, that their daily toil is now that of 2 worker as measured by the bean counters 30 odd years ago,

    Labour’s Andrew Little says it via statistical speak, in 20 years labour output has increased by 40% but wages by only 12%,

    There is of course 2 aspects in play here, one being the driving down of wages during the Neo-liberal anti-worker revolution of the past 30 years, this must,can, and will to a certain extent be addressed by raising the minimum wage and by good employers across the spectrum who do and plan on paying the living wage to their employees,

    But what of the other question, possibly not as pressing as wage rates even in the minds of that army of cleaners, dish washers and other low waged, high labour input workers across the economy,

    A question of Ergs, just what is the measure of the acceptable level of labour input a worker should be expected to provide as labour to any particular occupation when measured against remuneration,(possibly more to the point, simply as what is acceptable in a given period of time),

    To be topical, but including all the workers labouring in such conditions, it is not only the wages paid to the Parliaments cleaners that are abhorrent, an obscenity if you will,

    It is the fact that here we are in a modern world, supposedly at a pinnacle of human development and we have 2 people not only working for what are best described as the wages of slavery, but employed in such a fashion in a 6 hour work shift having to undertake a task of such magnitude that they are in effect modern day Slaves,

    IF, you poo poo such an idea, there is no need, as Campbell live is about to do, conduct a little show of research by having a couple of Parliaments MP’s attempt to provide the ergs necessary to clean all 180 of those toilets to provide yourself necessary proof,

    Get off your arse right now and go and clean the toilet, proof enough for anyone, but don’t stop at cleaning that toilet once, clean it for as many times as you can humanly manage for 6 hours, you might begin then to define Slavery in modern New Zealand,

    Now back to the point, which is that not only should we be looking at wage rates as the measurement of our labour out-put, we should, perhaps must, also begin to develop a measurement and a strategy surrounding what is ‘the maximum expected expenditure of Ergs in any employment activity in a given period of work’,

    In the case of Parliaments cleaning staff, such an equation is as simple of how many bogs should 2 cleaners be expected to scrub in one 6 hour period of work, i would suggest that 180 is far too many…

    • Tracey 7.1

      those cleaners only have themselves to blame. They should stop work immediately, take out student loans and go to study or trades, build up a debt and be unable to feed and house their children until they have qualified and moved beyond entry level positions, that’s what they would do if they really had some gumption and wanted to do well in life.

      • bad12 7.1.1

        Lolz Tracey, you have saved the likes of SSLands and KK from having to provide their usual pieces of bovine excrement as a contribution…

      • greywarbler 7.1.2

        For goodness sake Tracey. Paula Bennett made it up to the highest place in the land almost. With a not very straight path to the top.

        This is the sort of thing you get to comments like yours. And the speaker misses the point that they are talking about thousands of people in that situation and giving an example of only one person in one special position.

        Anyway I think bringing up children to be strong, clever, well spoken, healthy, skilled, sympathetic, thoughtful, innovative, honest, confident, well-read, involved in art and sport …. is almost a full time job and the government should make a point of trying to gain part-time work for mothers so they can go back to work part time when they wish, and longer when their children are wise enough to manage without constant oversight.

    • Tracey 7.2

      Marilyn Waring did some pretty amazing work on measuring unpaid work in the 80′s. Went under the radar here, but not at the OECD where she was working. I know she worked for years on models to better define economic success than GDP and more traditional measures.

    • bad12 7.3

      A hat-tip tho does deservedly go to the Green Party’s Gareth Hughs and ex-NZFirst MP Brendon Horan for agreeing as part of Campbell Live’s push for ‘the living wage’, to join the Parliaments cleaners for a night on the frontline as bog scrubbers,

      While it might be a token gesture, try cleaning those toilets for a year and you will get a ‘real’ sense of the energy involved, anything that lifts the lives and wages of those who daily toil in our economy expending the most energy for the least pay has to be at least aknowledged if not applauded…

      • Tracey 7.3.1

        what? No Tau Henare? Bennett? You DO surprise me

        • bad12 7.3.1.1

          Henare, via the Party Whips has been so the rumor goes told to take the vows of silence, His contribution to the discussion so far should see Him take another slide down the ‘party list’,

          While it is laudable in National Party circles to be an employer who pays little more than the minimum wage, and, highly applauded when an employer has managed to halve the work-force previously employed to fulfill a particular contract, it is Criminal in Nationals eyes to ever give the peasants a hint of the real disdain National and it’s supporters normally reserve for those they see as undeserving…

    • RedBaronCV 7.4

      4 minutes a bog including travelling time. perhaps they only clean the execuitve loos every second day – well they should anyway

    • Descendant Of Sssmith 7.5

      Time and a half after 8 hours and time and a half for working between 5:00 pm and 7:00 am should sort the wages out.

      Employing enough staff to work at a steady, rather than, frantic pace should sort the workload out.

      The state directly employing them as public servants should sort the cost of this out by removing profit and shifting that profit directly to wages.

      Them being public servants should mean they could join the PSA should sort their union coverage out and improve over time their working conditions.

      The govt can then order general wage orders every year to lift people’s wages by the inflation rate in order to maintain relativity.

      Seems simple enough.

      • bad12 7.5.1

        ”Employing enough staff should sort the workload out”, yes, of course but how after 30 years of the Neo-liberal attack on workers do we convince employers to hire that ‘enough’ staff,

        Effective Legislation is needed where within such a frame-work an equally effective measurement of ‘Work’ is defined in an easily measurable way,

        For starters we need an effective Labour Department, with the teeth and the work-force able to act upon complaints and effectively police labour laws,

        The Parliaments cleaning staff, it would seem reasonably easy to address the low wages and the overly-high expectations surrounding the amount of work expected of these people in any given shift of work, but what of the 30,000 OTHER cleaners who daily toil in silence under the same conditions as those cleaners of that Parliament,

        What of the 30,000 who nightly toil in the kitchens of 30,000 restaurants, the 100s of thousands who toil at menial occupations being pushed to the point of ‘burn out’ by expectations of work that as Labour’s Andrew Little says has seen them in 20 years lift their labour productivity by 40%,

        Lifting ‘labour productivity’ by 40% of course has been achieved simply via forcing fewer workers to do more work, if such work then burns these workers out, the employers are not
        fussed, there’s plenty more on the dole where the last lot came from,

        What is needed, in my opinion, is a Labour Department that measures work input across whole industries and right down to the macro-level of individual job sites, what is also needed is legislation whereby regulation such job sites can be ordered to take on more workers so as to accomplish the particular task of work being carried out,

        My view is that the next Labour/Green Government needs to both Legislate the minimum wage and Legislate the amount of work expected for that hourly wage…

        • miravox 7.5.1.1

          “Employing enough staff should sort the workload out”

          Where I am it’s against the law to work more than 10 hours a day, or 50 hours a week. Employees can get little warning letters from their employers if they’re at risk of breaching the law.

          If they want more work done they either have to hire more staff to work safely and efficiently, improve processes or innovate – they’re the keys to rising productivity (if that’s what you’re looking for), not grinding people down.

          • bad12 7.5.1.1.1

            Interesting, enlightened workplace Legislation, where is it that you might be??? Lolz serious question i would like to google up the relevant info….

          • bad12 7.5.1.1.2

            ”Rising productivity”, no far far from it, Labour’s Andrew Little points out that in 20 years ‘labour productivity’ has risen by 40% and i have figures here from the NZ Treasury that show that rise in ‘labour productivity’ to be as high as 60% over a longer time-scale, i think 30 years,

            So to be blunt, tell the Massah Boss to shove His or Her labour productivity up His or Her Anus what we want is a fair days work for a fair days pay,

            What i would like to see happen is for the ‘Spotless Cleaning’ contract details to suffer a sudden LEAK into the public arena,

            What i want to know is just how much Parliaments services pays this particular cleaning company to clean those particular 180 toilets every week,

            My guess, Spotless is likely to be getting paid 5-10 thousand dollars weekly for that one contract alone,

            My belief is that such semi-slave labour is being paid for by the taxpayer and we have the right to KNOW…

            • miravox 7.5.1.1.2.1

              “Rising productivity”, no far far from it, Labour’s Andrew Little points out that in 20 years ‘labour productivity’ has risen by 40% “

              Yep – that’s productivity by grinding people down. It’s not sustainable in a societal or a business sense. For as long as you can squeeze more and more out of workers for by longer hours and lower pay there will be no societal cohesion, and no decent investment in processes, safety or innovation (imo).

  8. Rosie 8

    Thanks for reporting on this most important study Karol. Lets see if it it makes it to the 6 pm news.

    A few things:

    It is reassuring to hear Cunliffe’s words. Let hope his words become a reality. The workplace of Key, Bridges and Bennett and co has been an unhappy and uneasy workplace. Both private sector and public sector workers suffer under this regime. Ya know sometimes when I read about Union campaigns from the States and the UK and I hear of the company who is trying to for example reduce the amount of pension they pay to their staff I think, “well, they’ve got it lucky, our own government is the almighty Union Buster, the one that speaks and acts for all the companies”.

    When have we ever had such insecure and unprotected work opportunities? I know I’ve never had it so bad in my 20+ work history. (One brief example of many: at my last contract with an NGO of all employers, there were no breaks except a short lunch and I overheard the boss organising to sack some one under the 90 day act!!!)
    All the time I hear about people’s terrible work situations. Some of the young people I’ve spoken with don’t even know there was once a thing as a steady permanent job with things like over time and regular scheduled breaks.

    I wasn’t aware until now that the education sector employed the highest proportion of temporary workers. This should be a sector where the workers – educators, are highly valued for their contribution to society, and their own knowledge and expertise should be acknowledged via by provision of permanent hours. I guess it demonstrates what a commodity education has become.

    Finally, Rhinocrates. There is nothing in the world like a cat friend to be a wonderful unconditional therapist. My cat friend has got me through the worst of times with her special feline powers of therapy. Even through the soul destroying hellish job that landed me the land of paroxotine for a few months, it was that bad. (Not the NGO one, another one!) Cats will know you care about them and admire them and they will seek you out. I hope you find such a friend soon. And yes they are very expensive to care for, especially when they get sick.
    Would you consider advertising your services as a cat sitter? When people go on holiday you could go in to their house and stay to take care of the cat. You have the place to yourself, and the companionship of a cat. God knows if I ever went on holiday you’d be the kind of person that would be welcome in my house and my cat friend would approve too.

    • Rosie 8.1

      Too late to edit:

      make that “… under the 90 day provision within the Act” and lets not forget Kate Wilkinson’s role prior to Bridges.

    • Rhinocrates 8.2

      Indeed. Many people think that cats just use us, but they love us as much as dogs do, but just show it in different way.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nmrToEEUgvU

      A cat sitter – a good idea! However, I might be too much like a cat myself – bound to my own territory.

      In any case, try this:

      http://www.youtube.com/user/simonscat

      • Rosie 8.2.1

        Thank you :-) Interesting theories re the lovely Nora’s musical inclinations, and Simon’s cat, always brings a smile.

      • Chooky 8.2.2

        ha ha Rhino….very good….I think Simon’s cartoon cat should be called Gareth!

        …interesting about the musical cat (mysteries of sound /harmonics /purring/physical healing are all fascinating)….personally i think cats have senses we don’t and can see things we cant….maybe that is why the Egyptians revered them ….as did the Norse?…and pagans

        You might get a Shostakovich loving cat

    • infused 8.3

      What a load of bullshit. You can’t not have breaks, and you can’t just fire someone under the 90 act. Get a clue.

      • Colonial Viper 8.3.1

        So you have no problem with enshrining your comments in law, then?

      • miravox 8.3.2

        “you can’t just fire someone under the 90 act”

        Best you go tell everybody who calls the 90-day trial period the ‘fire at will’ law then.

        • infused 8.3.2.1

          Please link me to all these fire at will cases please.

          • miravox 8.3.2.1.1

            lmgtfy

            Actually, I said everybody who calls it the 90 day fire at will law. I didn’t mention ‘cases’ But I’m sure you can google those yourself too. There have been a few. you can start with Burger Fuel then go on to Positive Airflow Limited and Green Cabs… usually there is only publicity if it’s a unionised workplace, of course.

            A Dept of Labour evaluation found 22% of employees were dismissed within the 90 period. Something like 11,000 is the figure given elsewhere.

            The thing is – even if they did fire illegally (pretty close to impossible if the employment contract process was done correctly, according to the legal beagles) the it would have to be a worker with huge backing to challenge it through the court process.

            For a legal interpretation about whether you can fire at will…
            http://www.buckettlaw.co.nz/Site/articles/2012_90_Day_Trials.aspx

            As of 1 April 2011 all new employees are subject to a 90 day trial period. This allows an employer to terminate an employment relationship within the first 90 days without reason and without risk. However, in order to successfully use the legislation the trial period must be in writing, agreed to in good faith and recorded at the start of the agreement. It is important that both employers and employees know how trial periods work, because they are not as simple as they appear…

            As long as you tick the right boxes when hiring, as an employer, you can do what you like.

        • infused 8.3.2.2

          Should be easy… being the fire at will law…

        • infused 8.3.2.3

          Going to bed. I’m sure you will have a massive list by morning.

          • Colonial Viper 8.3.2.3.1

            No cases exist?

            Then the law is unused, unnecessary and clearly redundant. Repeal.

          • McFlock 8.3.2.3.2

            The government chose not to monitor it, but as Marty G pointed out shortly afterwards, the unions have documented some cases. Do your own research.

            But the problem is that there are few if any poster “cases” because the law means there is no redress – all an official complaint would do is leave legal bills and give an unemployed worker a reputation of being a troublemaker. Not what you want when you’re competing with hundred of other people for a single job.

            Most people who live in the real world and therefore know below-median jobseekers would have stories about the abuses that happen in this environment – especially with the combination of casual low-wage work, 90 day bill and WINZ subsidised employment.

            We have a new generation of indentured labour being formed, not tying people to employers but to roles in society. Keep ‘em too poor to afford education or turning down abusive conditions, but make that work so insecure that they can’t work their way out of the situation, either.

  9. Puckish Rogue 9

    “Insecure work”

    - Well thats a new one I guess, right up there with “living wage” as a load of made-up bollix but I did like this from Cunliffe:

    “Subject to the provisions of fiscal responsibility”

    - Translation as follows:

    “We know its unaffordable, we know we won’t implement it but it sounds good and everyone on the minimum wage will vote for us”

    and because everyone here loves polls (when it suits)

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9262148/Cunliffe-lays-out-Labours-plans

    • bad12 9.1

      Pucker Up wont you, don’t forget to bend over while your dong so, whats pleasing about your comment is that sense of defeat you transmit via it for National in November 2014,

      It’s so good to see one of the Tory swamp hogs having such a good grasp of the realities of MMP politics with a Labour Party in the ascendency,

      ”The IMMEDIATE raising of the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour”, you must be the only person in New Zealand right now that believes that will not occur,

      Subject to the conditions of fiscal responsibility the ‘Living Wage’ will be included, first for Government’s direct employees,

      i would assume as Labour repatriate the spending of a large part of Government spending from foreign economies those wishing to ‘win’ such contracts here in New Zealand will also have to be a ‘living wage’ employer,

      Pretty simple really, the fact that you cannot grasp such only reveals to us all that you are even more so, simple that is…

    • Rosie 9.2

      “Insecure work” and “living wage” might be buzz words to you PR but they are just as real as those terms “flexible work hours” and “rationalisation”.

      • Puckish Rogue 9.2.1

        “Subject to the provisions of fiscal responsibility”

        • Tim 9.2.1.1

          which of course will depend on available revenue – there are various ways of obtaining the available – most, I imagine, not to your liking – but all quite feasible

  10. Puckish Rogue 10

    “Pucker Up wont you, don’t forget to bend over while your dong so, whats pleasing about your comment is that sense of defeat you transmit via it for National in November 2014″

    - Due to MMP and Nationals poor grasp of it I felt National should only get one term but I didn’t count on Labours sheer incompetence

    “It’s so good to see one of the Tory swamp hogs having such a good grasp of the realities of MMP politics with a Labour Party in the ascendency”

    - Sorry to have to point out to you that we still have an election to come and the honeymoon period for Cunliffe will soon end because hes not as popular as Key

    Subject to the conditions of fiscal responsibility the ‘Living Wage’ will be included, first for Government’s direct employees,

    - I doubt many the governments direct employees are on less than $18.40 so that’ll be easy to implement I guess

    i would assume as Labour repatriate the spending of a large part of Government spending from foreign economies those wishing to ‘win’ such contracts here in New Zealand will also have to be a ‘living wage’ employer,

    - If they’re allowed to, there are rules and laws that have to be followed

    Pretty simple really, the fact that you cannot grasp such only reveals to us all that you are even more so, simple that is…

    - I guess I’m just not as simple as you then :)

    PS I hit the reply button but it didn’t work

    [lprent: The server side is pretty foolproof coding wise. However the client side works by using javascript to change the position of the comment form to the right place in the comments div and then attaches the relevant parent comment id in. This all relies on the client browser allowing javascript and performing it correctly. Neither are guaranteed because it depends on how well your system is configured and on memory usage etc. That is by far the most likely sources of the problem.

    (as a hint do not rely on the Chrome browser for this you've just chewed up a few GB of RAM with google analytics doing javascript for realtime site information - goes really slow and javascript fails all of the time) ]

    • bad12 10.1

      So in the course of 2 comments you have gone from ‘it will never happen” to so that will be easy to implement i guess” as far as the ‘Living Wage ‘ for direct Government employees goes,

      Pretty much a light-weight as far as comments and commenters go, i tend to somewhat agree with you vis a vis Labour’s 2011 election result which was hamstrung by the ‘apparent’ main plank of that election being to raise the age of Superannuation eligibility, i am sure tho most Labour supporters will see far more to be gained by having David Cunliffe as the next Prime Minister than would have been the case had Phill Goff assumed the position,

      However, if you examine the National Government program from 2008-2011 you would have been forgiven for seeing this Slippery lead National Government as a shoe-in for three terms,

      Sad to say,(for you), Slippery’s Government only have to lose 2 % points, or Labour gain 2, and it becomes impossible for National to form a Government…

  11. greywarbler 11

    Business New Zealand does not agree about the extent of the problem, but is worried for some.
    “With that cohort of people who really are struggling at the bottom of the labour market, what we need to do with them is invest a lot in them in terms of their skills,” Phil O’Reilly said.

    I think that this applies to small business in particular. If they can only keep in business by getting workers at a discount, then they are either being undermined by other businesses not meeting their already small obligations, or the locality is oversupplied with that business, or they are inadequate at running and managing the business or bleeding too much out of it.

    Then perhaps they should downsize their home to something that matches their low profit/drawings. Perhaps we would be better to make starting a company or partnership a little harder and requiring certification in business practices that includes employee relations, and obligations, and oversight.

  12. Mary 12

    Has anyone, perhaps David Cunliffe or Helen Kelly, spoken at the conference about the need to reintroduce proper social security provision that enables meaningful participation as citizens? And how looking after the lowest paid workers is inextricably linked to looking after the poor regardless of income source? Or is it business as usual for Labour on this front?

    • bad12 12.1

      The short answer if i may be so impudent to comment on behalf of appears to be No…

      • Mary 12.1.1

        …and yes, it’s business as usual.

        All power to Mana and the Greens.

        • karol 12.1.1.1

          Well, I’ve just watched Cunliffe’s speech – Jeeeeezuz! That’s rousing stuff.

          It isn’t totally business as usual. There is a change there. Cunliffe has re-committed his team/government to be aligned with the unions – no quarter given to those who disparage unions.

          I, too, have concerns about whether he’s committed to re-building social security. But he has moved away from Sheaerer’s deserving and undeserving poor. Cunliffe repeated;y talks about a society for all New Zealanders. he starts of talking about the prevcariat. He talks about the unemployed living in garages, and children in poverty. It IS a speech to the unions – so the focus is on work.

          So, I’ll reserve judgement til I hear what he plans for social security, and I’ll vote Green to keep his team honest.

          • Mary 12.1.1.1.1

            I did mean business as usual on the social security front only. I’ll be voting Mana for the same reason you’re voting Green. That can only strengthen the left’s position overall.

            • bad12 12.1.1.1.1.1

              Lolz, i am a Green Party member and this far out from November 2014 my vote is also going to the Mana Party, i see the need to be building ‘the broad church of the left’ more than i see the need for tribal politics…

        • bad12 12.1.1.2

          My thoughts are like Karol’s i believe, lets Taiho for a little time and see if Labour will publicly address the ‘issue’ of Welfare aka removing all the ugly s**t installed in the system by Paula,

          Not a blank check for Labour to ignore the plight of those reliant upon the benefit system, just the breathing space for the next Minister to gather Her thoughts…

          • Mary 12.1.1.2.1

            Not just what Paula’s installed. How about waiting to see if Labour will restore certain cornerstones of our social security system so arrogantly and sneakily removed by Labour?

    • karol 12.2

      The videos of Cunliiffe’s speech are linked at the bottom of my post above. And, I imagine there is no focus on social security, and there needs to be.

  13. newsense 13

    How did this play on the 6pm news?

    Was it supposed to? Didn’t seem to be in the first segment of the news, apart from a quote on Super which was framed by Steven Joyce.

    Not much publicity for it as far as I can tell.

  14. newsense 14

    can see a video on TVNZ’s website at the top, no video on TV3, but some text stories.

    Guess that media love-in/honeymoon is not locked in – big news for a lot of us though.

  15. newsense 15

    Mostly fair handed coverage from One- though called the promises expensive which $30 million doesn’t seem to be, compared to billions in tax cuts, billions in missed super money, which is running Nationals line. Seems like a lot of leadership auditioning from Joyce recently- ETMZ, etc etc and Collins popping up to be extra, super tough on crime.

    It did give Cunliffe’s rebuttal as the closing- he would only do it if the country was in financial condition for it or some such and gave a good strong quote: “There will be no more fire-at-will without even an explanation”

    Joyce: ‘You can’t lift wages by fiat’ only cut taxes, or cut youth wages…or give hand outs to failed businesses…these are things it is possible to do by fiat- wages you must wait for the market fairy and if the employer feels like it…

    also Joyce: “jack up everybody’s wages” Are we all on less than a living wage in NZ or is that just how the Nats wish us to be? truth comes out…

  16. greywarbler 16

    I’ve been trying to listen to Cunliffe talking at the CTU meeting and being recorded, but against such a barrage of sound of conversation and laughter that it’s impossible for me to hear a joined-up sentence. I wonder if there is such a thing as a sound screen that, with two perhaps clear panels on feet, could be quickly erected so as to baffle the surrounding noise as people chat, laugh while the important speaker, as Cunliffe was at the CTU, can actually talk and be recorded or just heard by journalists and others.

    How can we get left-wing views through to the media? It’s so important that it gets facilitated, it can’t be treated with a casual attitude with the person of interest battling away to be heard when they put their points and thoughts forward.

  17. infused 17

    Removing the 90 day trail, like dickhead wants to do, will be the stupidest thing ever.

    “Chloe Sifflett, a 21-year-old fastfood worker, says employers “think they can just hire new people and forget about the people they already have.””

    That doesn’t even make sense.

    • newsense 17.1

      jog on

      • infused 17.1.1

        Well it’s simple. New permanent roles will go to contract, or they won’t be employed at all.

        • Colonial Viper 17.1.1.1

          Well, it’s not hard to marginalise those businesses out of trading, and advantage more socially responsible employers.

    • McFlock 17.2

      Get a job like most NZers have to put up with and you might understand it.
      She was too nice to use the words “fuck over” rather than “forget”.

    • bad12 17.3

      The only dickhead around here seems to be YOU, befor the stupidity of this 90 day trial period was brought about by this Slippery National Government had the sky fallen in for the lack of one???…

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    Mana | 09-07
  • Internet Mana – “the Roadtrip!”
    Internet MANA will change the Government because it’s time to create an inclusive and independent Aotearoa. We are not afraid to disrupt the status quo, to fix what is not working and innovate with new ideas. Let’s reconnect New Zealand,...
    Mana | 09-07
  • Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles
    Evidence heard in today's inquest into the death of Jane Farrelly highlights the Police's ongoing failure to protect people on bicycles, the Green Party said today. The Police decided not to prosecute the driver involved in a fatal collision with...
    Greens | 09-07
  • High cost of storm damage sign of things to come
    New figures showing storm damage cost New Zealand $77 million in the first half of the year are a reminder of what we're up against with climate change, the Green Party said today.According to the Insurance Council of New Zealand,...
    Greens | 09-07
  • SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent
    National has done a deal with a company that continues to flout New Zealand's gambling regulations, Green Party gambling spokesperson Denise Roche said today.In a media sting earlier this year, an elderly man was allowed to play pokie machines continuously...
    Greens | 09-07
  • Please explain Minister… yet again
    Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy needs to explain what is going on with our export of sheep casings to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Our exports of partially processed casings to China have been halted and no...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’
    A Labour Government will put ICT at the highest level of Government by creating the position of Chief Technology Officer to directly advise the Prime Minister and Cabinet on Information Technology issues, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Reporting directly...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high
    There’s no cause for celebration with the latest Household Incomes Report showing the number of children living in severe poverty has reached its highest level this century, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “New Zealand once valued itself as the...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Government in denial over income inequality
    Today’s Household Incomes Report from MSD underscores National’s continued failure to recognise inequality is a problem and is getting worse, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “The report shows income inequality has increased over the past year and remains higher...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes
    National’s decision to cut nearly $2.5 million from adult and community education in Canterbury over the past five years was short-sighted and Labour is committed to restoring funding for the sector, Labour’s Associate Tertiary Education spokesperson Megan Woods says. “The...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis
    Latest Government data proves John Key is not working for all New Zealanders as the incomes of the poorest half of kiwis stayed the same in the 6 years under National, while the top 20 percent's rose by thousands, the...
    Greens | 08-07
  • Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour
    Labour has been very clear that it is necessary to review and evaluate the effectiveness of Whanau Ora for Māori, says Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. "I was pleased to meet with social service, youth, justice and health providers who...
    Labour | 08-07
  • No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy?
    Another significant shortfall in the Government’s books suggests the economic recovery may have already passed most New Zealanders by, Labour’ Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “With unemployment still high, wage rates stagnating and inequality widening, only the lucky few are...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Survey shows parents want smaller class sizes
    A new survey finding most parents believe class sizes are too big shows Labour is right to reduce them, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The Post-Primary Teachers' Association survey of 750 people conducted by UMR Research found 54 per...
    Labour | 08-07
  • Crime targets no excuse for fewer prosecutions
    Police are being instructed to charge fewer people in order to meet National’s crime reduction targets, Labour says. “Front line police and others in the criminal justice system are telling us police have had pressure put on by senior officers...
    Labour | 07-07
  • QV figures show two-track housing market
    The two-track housing market that has developed under National is underlined in QV’s latest report, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “QV’s index shows many homeowners in the regions are facing declining equity in their properties, while in Auckland and...
    Labour | 07-07
  • Housing figures National’s shame
    The number of Auckland households in urgent and serious need of housing has increased tenfold since March 2012, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.The Ministry of Social Development, which took over Housing New Zealand's assessment responsibility for social housing...
    Greens | 07-07
  • Fed Farmers leading wrong way on water
    Federated Farmers needs to show greater leadership on water quality, the Green Party said today. The Green Party is responding to claims by the outgoing and incoming Federated Farmers' dairy section chairs that 'there is no need for urgent action"...
    Greens | 07-07
  • John Key must get whaling assurance from Abe
    John Key must seek a concrete assurance from Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that Japan will not flout the International Court of Justice's (ICJ) ruling on whaling, the Green Party said today.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is meeting with...
    Greens | 06-07
  • HAVE A KITKAT DAVID, THERE’S A LONG WAY TO GO YET – Harawira
    “Internet MANA is not ruling out the possibility of a entering into coalition with Labour after the election”, said Internet MANA leader Hone Harawira with tongue firmly in cheek, after Labour leader David Cuniliffe said it was ‘highly unlikely’ that...
    Mana | 06-07
  • Government underfunding jeopardises recycling
    The Government's underfunding of the TV Takeback scheme jeopardises the whole e-waste drop-off network across the country, the Green Party said today. The TV Takeback scheme was put in place to deal with the glut of old TVs needing to...
    Greens | 04-07
  • Whaling must be top of agenda for Japan PM visit
    New Zealand must make protecting whales a priority during next week's visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Green Party oceans spokesperson Gareth Hughes said today.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will make an official visit to New Zealand next week...
    Greens | 04-07
  • ACC investments risking native species
    The National Government has invested in a gold drilling company whose activities threaten a critically endangered native frog species, the Green Party has revealed today.Despite being a signatory to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC)...
    Greens | 03-07
  • Small class sizes and school meals get another big tick in schools report
    “Congratulations to the Child Poverty Action Group for making it crystal clear what’s needed to ensure kids from the least well-off communities can get the best out of school” said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau. ...
    Mana | 03-07
  • Government’s bottom lines for water create a licence to pollute
    The Government has pulled the plug on cleaning up our dirty rivers so they are safe for swimming, the Green Party said today. The Green Party was commenting on the Government's national bottom lines for water quality released today by...
    Greens | 02-07
  • Green Party’s answer to climate Big Ask
    The Green Party has welcomed a Gen Zero report calling for concrete climate commitments from all parties ahead of the election."Gen Zero's Big Ask report is a timely reminder about what real climate action looks like," said Green Party Climate...
    Greens | 02-07
  • Shots fired at Mana office – Harawira
    “I get threatened with violence and I get death threats, but when somebody starts taking shots at my office then that’s another matter altogether”,  said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira after shots were fired at one of...
    Mana | 01-07
  • Protecting Papatuanuku a Priority for MANA – Harawira
    “Big ups to Greenpeace for their Climate Voter initiative http://www.climatevoter.org.nz/”, said Hone Harawira, MANA leader and MP for Tai Tokerau. “Letting people see which parties stand up for Papatuanuku and which parties stand for overdevelopment and pollution should help focus their...
    Mana | 01-07
  • Ae Marika! 1 July 2014
    I got a really good response to last week’s article about forestry safety, including this gem from an old mate - “Back in the early 70′s our Maori bush gangers showed you the ropes. You never forgot a thing they...
    Mana | 30-06
  • Green Party MP Holly Walker to step down from party list
    Green Party MP Holly Walker has decided to withdraw from the party's list in the upcoming election and will not seek a second term in Parliament. Ms Walker was number 12 on the Green Party list."Unfortunately, a recent unexpected change...
    Greens | 30-06
  • Pasifika Immigration Plans for Labour- too little, too late – James Papal...
    The Labour Party has recently announced that it has plans to speed up family reunification for Pasifika people. “I have seen these plans and I believe that these are too timid” says MANA Pasifika vice President, James Papali’i. “After waiting...
    Mana | 30-06
  • Support for USA in Iraq “not a deal to die for” – Harawira
    “When John Key says ‘New Zealand fully supports the current steps announced by President Obama (in Iraq) 100%’ he is one step away from committing our troops simply to get a good trade deal with the USA,” said MANA Leader...
    Mana | 24-06
  • Ae Marika! 23 June 2014
    Another key spot for me to meet people is Auckland Airport, on my way back from parliament to either go to Waitakere or the North Shore, or to catch link flights to Whangarei, Kerikeri, or Kaitaia on constituency business. Every...
    Mana | 23-06
  • There is a war being waged on NZ men… at least according to this Facebook...
    Men’s masculinity is under attack in New Zealand and four people, one of whom is a woman (it always stings that little bit more when a woman is pushing anti-feminist ideas), have created a Facebook page to do something about it....
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Dear hysterical NZ Men – Women’s rights are no threat to our masculinit...
    How insecure in your masculinity must you feel to buy into believing Labour are declaring a war on men? This Facebook site, The Labour Party’s War on Men, is a real voyage through the psyche of angry men angry at...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Education reforms – there is a choice
    To have the Education Minister and the sycophantic mainstream media constantly asserting that the only way to improve the education our children get is to reform the system by privatisation, performance pay, and the collection of a few data sets...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Not That Different After All: Some thoughts on Neoliberalism
    OVER THE PAST 35 YEARS,  the neoliberal ideology has been adopted by virtually the entire Right. Certainly, there is no serious right-wing political party – either here in New Zealand or elsewhere in the developed world – that does not...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Hone Harawira
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • #TeamKeyJr
    #TeamKeyJr...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Random Thoughts on Random Things #7 – the fate of the Maori Party
    . . Watching Pita Sharples interviewed on TV3′s ‘The Nation’ on 5 July, two things occurred to me. 1. There is every likelihood that, come election day,  the Maori Party is doomed. If they are really, really, really lucky, they...
    The Daily Blog | 11-07
  • Every bomb Israel drops on Gaza creates 10 new ‘terrorists’
    The latest round of horror Apartheid Israel is using to justify their latest disproportional response seeds from a couple of events. America’s need to talk to Iran because of Iraq has spooked Apartheid Israel into manufacturing a new crisis that...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • Media Release: 2014 Household Incomes Report from MSD
    MIL OSI – Source: Child Poverty Action Group – Headline: Media Release: 2014 Household Incomes Report from MSD 10 July 2014 CPAG says high child poverty rates have become normalised and New Zealand’s poorest children should expect a far greater...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • How can New Zealand help defend the Palestinian struggle?
    FOR MOST NEW ZEALANDERS the Middle East is shorthand for war without end. When I was growing up most of us knew no better than to believe Israel was a small, plucky state standing up to big, thuggish neighbouring bullies....
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • “I got an apology”… said no survivor of rape or gendered violence eve...
    When I was 15 my cousin who lived with me and my mum would come home black and blue. Her dealer and boyfriend, Nick Ge used to beat her for whatever reason, for whatever justification he saw fit. Men who...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • NZ – Inequality and poverty measured
    The Household Incomes Reports by the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) are providing powerful evidence that New Zealand is a deeply unequal society with intractable levels of poverty that includes many with jobs as well as those without. The reports which are...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Child Poverty Action Group – Those with the least left furthe...
    This week a delighted – and no doubt relieved – Minister of Social Development gave us the news we had all been waiting for: under her careful watch, child poverty has fallen 3%. The figures are in the latest Ministry...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Charter Schools are working, why not ...
    Tomorrow is the third anniversary of the day Parliament dumped the TVNZ Charter, ceremoniously, by 64 MPs to 56.   The Broadcasting Minister of the day, one J Coleman, said without too much of a smirk that the removal of the charter would have little...
    The Daily Blog | 10-07
  • Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Greens challenge Police to protect people on bicycles Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release “Motorists passing people on bicycles and other vulnerable road users owe them a high duty of care.”...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • High cost of storm damage sign of things to come
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: High cost of storm damage sign of things to come Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release New figures showing storm damage cost New Zealand $77 million in the first half of...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: SkyCity’s commitment to preventing harm non-existent Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 | Press Release National’s deal with SkyCity means that a company that flout’s New Zealand’s gambling regulations has the opportunity to greatly...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Please explain Minister… yet again
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Please explain Minister… yet again Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy needs to explain what is going on with our export of sheep casings to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says....
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Chief Technology Officer to lead Labour’s ‘Digital Upgrade’ A Labour Government will put ICT at the highest level of Government by creating the position of Chief Technology Officer to directly advise the...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Murray McCully must go: sign the petition to demand his resignation
    Sign the petition to demand Murray McCully resign and stand with Tania Billingsley and the thousands of women who have survived sexual assault in New Zealand. Tania Billingsley, who is at the centre of the Malaysian diplomat case, has lifted her own...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • More mining our protected places
    Today is the last day for submissions on Chatham Rock Phosphate’s (CRP) marine consent application to mine the seabed in a protected area, in our most productive fishery. I just got my submission in which you can read here. This...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Poverty and inequality denial are no reasons for celebration
    The headlines proclaim that concerns about poverty and inequality is just a lot of left wing PC guilt squawking because according to cherry picked statistics there isn’t really any inequality or poverty. Cue a rousing round of ‘we don’t know...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • National breaks promise to insulate every state house
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: National breaks promise to insulate every state house Thursday, 10 Jul 2014 | Press Release “It’s not just a broken promise, it’s poor economics.” National has broken its promise to insulate every...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • “World Class Welfare System” My Arse. Come Clean Nathan Guy!
    Pigs are not safe in New Zealand. How many farms do activists have to film before the Ministry of Primary Industries comes clean and admits their accreditation scheme is an absolute failure? Do activists need to do the job of...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Tania Billingsley – hero
    The astounding courage exhibited by Tania Billingsley last night on 3rd Degree should put the Government to shame. Her criticism of those charged with upholding her rights is to the bone and righteous… The woman at the centre of a...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • McCully should stand down while review considers his actions
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: McCully should stand down while review considers his actions Thursday, 10 Jul 2014 | Press Release Mr McCully would never have considered a TV apology good enough for the Prime Minister and...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, why I love John ...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • If Oprah had been the ref for the Brazil-Germany game
    If Oprah had been the ref for the Brazil-Germany game...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto
    MIL OSI – Source: Mana Movement – Headline: No place for user pays in our classrooms – Minto  Posted on July 10, 2014 by admin in John Minto, Press Releases“Labour’s education policy announcements last weekend have several welcome features which...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • 7 reasons why online voting isn’t a solution
    Online voting is being waved around again as a means to increase participation.  Here are the 7 reasons why I think online voting is a bad idea. 1 – 21% of those asked why theory didn’t vote in 2011 gave ‘didn’t...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Greg Presland – National and Pacifica
    John Key and National have recently been claiming that Pacifica are leaving Labour en masse and are heading towards National.  I am sorry John but there is no chance of this happening.  But Key and co have been able to get the...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Police sweeping domestic violence under the carpet?
    Pressure to lower stats – MPPolice were under government orders to “minimise” the number of domestic violence charges they lay to make crime statistics look good, Labour MP Andrew Little claimed yesterday. This latest allegation of Police downplaying domestic violence...
    The Daily Blog | 09-07
  • Invite: AGM & Political Forum
    MIL OSI – Source: Child Poverty Action Group – Headline: Invite: AGM & Political ForumCPAG AGM & Election Year Political Forum 08 July 2014 When: Wednesday 30 July Where: St Columba Centre, 40 Vermont St, Ponsonby, Auckland RSVP here! Please...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Housing figures National’s shame
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Housing figures National’s shame Monday, 07 Jul 2014 | Press Release “These figures are a shame on the Government. All New Zealanders deserve secure housing, whether renting or owning.” The number of...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • QV figures show two-track housing market
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: QV figures show two-track housing market The two-track housing market that has developed under National is underlined in QV’s latest report, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “QV’s index shows many homeowners...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • GUEST POST: Michael Wood – Just Structures
    The headline number at this weekend’s Labour Congress was a very good speech from David Cunliffe, the centre-piece of which was the well-received announcement on class sizes. The Congress ended on a high note, with delegates energised and positive media...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Cunliffe vs Key
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking on Radio Hauraki...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • A letter to Hekia
    A letter to Hekia...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Animal abuse unacceptable for pigs and consumers
    I was a kid on pig farms in the 1970s. Piglets were castrated using a scalpel without anaesthetic, wire cutters were used to trim their teeth and cut off their tails. Wire was forced through their sensitive snouts. Row upon...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • A better Canterbury and a better NZ
    Labour’s first 100 days is going to be a busy time – we’ve got a lot to change!  Kick-starting the Canterbury recovery is going to be a crucial part of those first 100 days.  Labour has announced several Canterbury specific...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Dear Leader loves you! Our cult of no personality
    .   The Cult of Dear Leader . It was inevitable. The poll-rated ‘popularity’ of Prime Minister has evolved into a full-blown, carefully-choreographed, Cult of Personality the likes of which this country has never before seen. The recent National Party...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs
    MIL OSI – Source: CTU – Headline: Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs “The effects on families of the global financial crisis, lack of adjustment of the accommodation supplement and high housing costs show...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Low income families hit hard
    MIL OSI – Source: Unite Union – Headline: Low income families hit hard Council of Trade Unions – Media Release Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs “The effects on families of the global financial...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Number of children in severe poverty reaches record high There’s no cause for celebration with the latest Household Incomes Report showing the number of children living in severe poverty has reached its...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Government in denial over income inequality
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Government in denial over income inequality Today’s Household Incomes Report from MSD underscores National’s continued failure to recognise inequality is a problem and is getting worse, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says....
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Canterbury hit hard by National’s cuts to night classes National’s decision to cut nearly $2.5 million from adult and community education in Canterbury over the past five years was short-sighted and Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: Its official – Teamkey not working for all kiwis Tuesday, 08 Jul 2014 | Press Release The latest Household Incomes Survey shows income inequality widening further under National, but that it is...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Whanau Ora to be reviewed under Labour Labour has been very clear that it is necessary to review and evaluate the effectiveness of Whanau Ora for Māori, says Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy?
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: No encore for the ‘Rock Star’ economy? Another significant shortfall in the Government’s books suggests the economic recovery may have already passed most New Zealanders by, Labour’ Finance spokesperson David Parker says....
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • NZ Police to spy on people in pubs? We like our fascism casual thanks
    Ummmm. What? Undercover cops to ‘spy’ on bar patronsAn ”outrageous” initiative will see undercover police officers ”spying on patrons”, Hospitality Association chief executive Bruce Robertson says. Southern district police last month began stationing plain-clothes officers in licensed premises to ensure...
    The Daily Blog | 08-07
  • Lisa Owen interviews Paula Bennett
    Paula Bennett says Government won’t raise benefit levels, disagrees with Children’s Commissioner that current levels do not allow children to participate in society....
    Scoop politics | 12-07
  • The Return of the Worm : Introducing The NZ Election Reactor
    Scoop Independent News has formed a partnership with leading polling company, Roy Morgan Research, to bring the original Worm back for the NZ 2014 Election....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Brazilian tourist behind bars for cocaine smuggling
    A 20-year-old Brazilian tourist will not see much of New Zealand, after being sentenced to five years’ imprisonment in the Manukau District Court today for trying to smuggle around $656,000 of cocaine into the country. He will be deported after...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Naenae College to benefit from ACC’s Mates and Dates pilot
    National Candidates Lewis Holden and Chris Bishop welcome the news that local students at Naenae College will directly benefit from being involved in ACC’s Mates and Dates pilot programme against sexual violence....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Mr Ismail’s bail conditions
    Mr Ismail was required by the Court to surrender his passport by 5.00 pm on 12 May. By this time, Police had been able to confirm with MFAT that he had diplomatic immunity and therefore the bail conditions were unenforceable....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • What Stops People Moving Out of Poverty
    Speaking For Ourselves is the title of a new report drawn from ground-breaking research that follows 100 families for one year. The families are long-term users of the Auckland City Mission’s food bank and have contributed their experience of what...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Police continue to build pressure on the Headhunters Gang
    Three patched Head Hunter Outlaw Motorcycle Gang (OMCG) members and an associate have been found guilty of conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery following the conclusion of a successful Police covert operation....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • The Nation 12,13 July: Poverty, Offshore Drilling, Regions
    Then as it tries to balance environmental concerns with jobs, Labour energy spokesperson David Shearer reveals his party’s new policy on offshore drilling....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Sexual and reproductive health in the Pacific
    Today on World Population Day, the New Zealand Parliamentarians Group on Population and Development (NZPPD) calls on governments in the Pacific to urgently invest in sexual and reproductive health, particularly family planning, to improve the choices...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Its the economy stupid
    A poll being conducted on the Massey Birdwood Settlers website asks the question - Its Election Year - what will you base your vote on?...
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Global Thinking Needed to Spark New Zealand’s Digital Future
    Giving Kiwi digital innovators the tools to help them think globally from day one is how New Zealand will become world-leader in the digital economy, says the Internet Party....
    Scoop politics | 11-07
  • Seafood Industry Strongly Opposed to CRP Mining Application
    The seafood industry strongly opposes Chatham Rock Phosphate’s application to mine the Chatham Rise, saying it will have “significant and irreversible adverse effects on the marine environment.” In its submission to the Environmental Protection...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Māori Parenting Course already a hit
    Social Development Minister Paula Bennett has commended programmes that rise up out of the community that work ‘with’ families, as opposed to interventions that do things ‘to’ families. She was speaking as guest of honour at the recent launch...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Royal visit no king hit
    Support for a Kiwi Head of State is still high after April's royal tour....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Captioning to give hard of hearing community greater access
    New Zealand political programmes on TV will soon be accessible to the Deaf and hard of hearing community. Able is pleased to announce that from Wednesday 23rd July, it will be providing closed captions for TV ONE’s Q+A, TV3’s 3rd...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Conservatives Law and Order Policy Based on Mythology
    “The Conservative Party’s Law and Order current slogan ‘Stand for Something’ should be changed to ‘Stand for Anything’ says Kim Workman, Rethinking Crime and Punishment, in its latest ‘Smart on Crime’ blog....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Billingsley reminds us that sexual abuse can be prevented
    Tania Billingsley’s choice to have name suppression lifted and to talk about the wider issue of rape culture that facilitated her assault has highlighted the prevalence of sexual violence in New Zealand and reminds us that it can be prevented....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • 90 jobs lost in the Waikato as NZ Post closes mail centre
    New Zealand Post has confirmed that 90 jobs will be lost when it closes its Waikato mail processing centre. The confirmation comes after NZ Post announced in June last year that it would be closing its Waikato, Wellington and Dunedin...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Award for excellence in International Development journalism
    VSA is proud to launch its award for excellence in International Development journalism. VSA is New Zealand’s largest and most experienced volunteer agency working in International Development....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Marchers Keep Maui’s to the fore
    After successful marches around the country, Maui’s dolphin campaigners continue their pressure on the Government with a march to John Key’s electorate office in Kumeu on Sunday 13 July at 10am, leaving from the Kumeu Arts Centre at 10.30, 300...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • ESC announcement ‘shamefully late’, says safety campaigner
    The government announcement that Electronic Stability Control will become compulsory on new vehicles is effectively locking the stable door after the horse has bolted, says the car review website dogandlemon.com. Electronic Stability Control detects...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Susan Devoy urges New Zealanders to stand up for the refugee
    Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy urges New Zealanders to stand up for the refugee. “Let’s replace the barbed wire of refugee camps with our own No. 8 wire mentality. Let’s be there for some of our planet’s most vulnerable...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Internet Party Wades in to Fix Sick Waterways
    New Zealand’s waterways will be cleaned up and much higher standards set on water quality in a 10-year plan to be introduced by the Internet Party by 2016....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Time for Kiwis to start punching above weight in Humanity
    Acknowledgments and warm greetings to you all. I would especially like to welcome the relatively new representative from the UNHRC Thomas Albrecht..welcome to our part of the world, the Deputy CE for Immigration Nigel Bickle and the Ian Axford...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • SSC Releases Performance Improvement Framework (PIF) Reports
    The Performance Improvement Framework (PIF) reviews released by State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie today include the full reviews of the Department of Conservation (DOC) and the Treasury....
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • Will new farming leader jeopardise NZ’s GE-free advantage?
    The recent election of William Rolleston as president of Federated Farmers could mean a push towards genetic engineering (GE) in farming, warns the Soil & Health Association. Dr Rolleston has for many years been a proponent of GE, and some...
    Scoop politics | 10-07
  • President of PGA to attend Workshop for Arms Trade Treaty
    Labour’s Associate Disarmament Spokesperson and Parliamentians for Global Action (PGA) President Ross Robertson will be attending a Workshop next week in Siem Reap, Cambodia, to promote signature and ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT)....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Calls for Government Intervention Premature But Inevitable
    The Taxpayers’ Union is reacting to calls for a Crown Manager to be appointed to shepherd Auckland Council through its budget crisis, with disappointment. Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Seeking Sanctuary
    What would you do if you were forced to flee your home because of war or persecution?...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Entrenched child poverty no cause for celebration
    Child Poverty Action Group says high child poverty rates have become normalised and New Zealand's poorest children should expect a far greater level of ambition for their well-being....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Cyclists want answers from political parties
    Cyclists are calling for better protection, following the Coroner's inquest into the death of Jane Farrelly, held in Hamilton this week. Mrs Farrelly was killed after being struck by a truck near Taupo on March 16 last year....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Malaysian embassy employee
    Police are continuing to support Tania who has recently applied to the court to vary the automatic name suppression given to her based on the charges involved. Police did not oppose this course of action as we wanted to support...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Christchurch Chep workers strike for national pay parity
    Workers at the Chep pallet plant in Christchurch are going on strike on Thursday 10 July, demanding pay parity with Chep’s Wiri pallet plant in Auckland, according to FIRST Union, the union for workers in the transport and logistics sector....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Margaret Mahy boat unveiled on anniversary of ship bombing
    Greenpeace is naming a new boat after one of New Zealand’s best known children’s authors, Margaret Mahy, at a ceremony today on the 29th anniversary of the Rainbow Warrior bombing in Auckland harbour....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • ACC announces schools in sexual violence prevention pilot
    ACC has announced the nine secondary schools and facilitators who will pilot its new sexual and dating violence prevention programme....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • PISA results shed the spotlight on financial literacy levels
    PISA financial literacy results shed the spotlight on financial literacy levels for young New Zealanders...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • NZPI urges Government to consider planning principles
    The New Zealand Planning Institute (NZPI) is urging the Government to consider a suite of NZPI-developed guiding principles on freshwater quality issues when it implements its upcoming freshwater reforms....
    Scoop politics | 09-07
  • Labour Party Policy a Mixed Bag
    The Insurance Council of New Zealand (ICNZ) would welcome any review of insurers’ response to the Canterbury earthquakes, rejects the Labour Party’s proposal for another regulator of the industry and supports its policy of transferring levies...
    Scoop politics | 09-07
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