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Family or Shopping?

Written By: - Date published: 1:38 pm, May 31st, 2016 - 50 comments
Categories: workers' rights - Tags: , ,

National’s Employment Minister Michael Woodhouse has introduced a Bill, The Shop Trading Hours Amendment Bill, to give councils the right to open shops on Easter Sunday. That would mean retail workers all over the country losing one of just three and a half days in the year that’s guaranteed as family time. It’s also not a public holiday so there’s no legal obligation for employers to pay more than standard rates on Easter Sunday.

The Government is relying on Peter Dunne and Te Ururoa Flavell to pass this Bill into law, but the union movement is pushing back by petitioning these two MPs. You can click here to sign and share that petition and help protect Easter Sunday.


50 comments on “Family or Shopping? ”

  1. Richard Christie 1

    Shift the date and disassociate the ‘family day’ from its superstitious religious links and I’m with you.

    Until then I decline to promote religious privileges.

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      Funny how that day’s association with religion is so strong in your own mind.

      You should really let it go instead of carrying it so close to your heart.

      But I do appreciate how some atheists like yourselves are such devout practitioners of your own beliefs.

      Good on ya mate.

      PS just checking you are aware that you don’t have to be a baptised Christian to have that day off?

      • As an atheist I still believe that working people deserve and need days off. If its because of a religious holiday so what !. because this bloody anti- worker tory governmment will not give one ,and with hardly any unions this is the only way to get one. the business people are not going to allow people off whilst there is a chance to make a few bob.
        So until we once again can get strong unions just make use of what we can.

      • Richard Christie 1.1.2

        Funny how that day’s association with religion is so strong in your own mind

        Duh, it’s not funny at all.

        It’s because it has been celebrated as a christian religious festival for approximately 2000 years, before that the date was used for some other ritual purpose.

        I’ll rather take my day off in celebration of something based in reality.

        If that’s OK by you.


        • Colonial Viper

          nah fuck it, it’s not OK by me.

          You haven’t been around for 2000 years (have you?) and the connection with religion is all in your own mind, it is not in the Holidays Act.

          I’ll rather take my day off in celebration of something based in reality.

          And what the fuck would someone like you know about reality? Especially when you can’t be arsed to consider the reality faced by tens of thousands of low paid workers in service and retail jobs who actually would quite like that day off?

          Give you a clue mate, people like you with rigid belief systems like you don’t get to define what reality is and what it isn’t.

          • Richard Christie


            Where’s the reality in a zombie resurrection myth?

            .Especially when you can’t be arsed to consider the reality faced by tens of thousands of low paid workers in service and retail jobs who actually would quite like that day off?

            Do you struggle with reading or just with comprehension?

            We can all scroll up a re read my initial post. Try it before you create more strawmen to puff yourself up with.

            Reality is not your friend.

            • Colonial Viper

              Nah mate, fuck you, you can go work Christmas day Good Friday Easter Sunday for free all year every year for all I care, don’t make everyone else follow your bullshit oppressive dead inside atheistic beliefs which have zero connection with reality.

              • Richard McGrath

                So you don’t mind that in times past a shop owner who wanted to open on Easter Sunday, earn money, and employ other people, was prevented doing so by politicians?

                • Colonial Viper

                  Yep I’m fine with that. Spend time with your husband and kids, and do your business on Sat and Mon. Business owners have families too you know.

                  • Richard McGrath

                    By all means spend time with your family, but don’t tell me I shouldn’t be allowed to work Sundays.

                    • adam

                      One Sunday a year, Oh the humanity – those Christians – next they will ask for protections for the poor and the weak.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Are you a moron Richard McGrath?

                      Why would you want to work Easter Sunday when you get paid for it as a public holiday?

                    • Richard McGrath []

                      In my line of work I don’t get paid for not working. If I and all my colleagues took the day off you would not be able to obtain medical treatment on a public holiday. How moronic is that?

                    • McFlock

                      You’re confusing your self-chosen business model for your “line of work”. Salaried doctors would be fine.

                      But more to the point, you’ve basically argued equivalence between urgent medical attention and buying a pair of socks.

                      Fucksake, stat hols already recognise that some things actually need to run 24/7/52. What they don’t accept is that this includes catering to the capricious whims of impulse shoppers who can’t plan ahead when they purchase the next thing your ED colleagues will extract from a cavity.

                • adam

                  The world is not all about money Richard, but then I’m not sure you know what love and humanity look like without putting a price on it.

                  So yes shops should be closed a few days a year, and people should spend time with family or friends. Politicians should but out of telling us when to have these holidays I agree, equally business people should but out as well.

                  • Richard McGrath

                    OK Adam, but you’ll need to accept that hospitals and medical centres will have no medical, nursing or admin staff on public holidays. Good luck with that.

                    • jcuknz

                      Richard McGrath highlights the stupidity of the traditional union position with the sob story of kids with their families.
                      I worked like Richard in an industry which I was liable to work 7/24/365, though mostly I didn’t.
                      The only position I support is that firms should have enough staff so that workers can take a day off to be with their families while maintaining the service to the public.
                      In my case would you have been happy to have no TV to watch with your family 🙂 Far more likely than hospital services LOL.

                    • jcuknz

                      Richard McGrath highlights the stupidity of the traditional union position with the sob story of kids with their families.
                      I worked like Richard in an industry which I was liable to work 7/24/365, though mostly I didn’t.
                      The only position I support is that firms should have enough staff so that workers can take a day off to be with their families while maintaining the service to the public.
                      In my case would you have been happy to have no TV to watch with your family 🙂 Far more likely than hospital services LOL.

                    • adam

                      I love how you always go to an extreme to plug you losing point. So what happens now? And what has happened for the last 50 years?

                      My five year old niece called your argument stupid, She understands that adults do reasonable things. I think she aced it.

              • cricklewood

                I’m with Richard on this one, the ‘religious’ holidays should be abolished and the days added to the current 4 week entitlement with an amendment to the holidays act making it unlawful to refuse leave on the major religious holidays and by that I mean not just dates significant to Christian calendar.
                That leaves the likes of Richard and myself to take the days off as we see fit and others to observe their specific religious holidays.

                • jcuknz

                  ADAM My point is based on the working condition I enjoyed some 25 years ago and earlier when I never worked more than a five day 40 hour week without getting overtime or penal rates. Somewhere in the meantime the unions have sold out the workers to the current bad situation IMO.

    • adam 1.2

      *Sigh* if we really had religious holidays like good Catholics, it be a bit more than you are use to Richard Christie. Indeed your sad anti-Christian rhetoric and anti worker rhetoric in the same short statement is no surprise.

      You just want freedom, to oppress, as you see fit. And religion stands in the way of your spiteful little amoral world.

      • Richard Christie 1.2.1

        (Rolls eyes).

        Ask any christian what the easter sunday holiday is celebrating.
        Recognising history and the blatantly obvious is nothing to do with being an atheist or not.

        Those who hold my viewpoint are not oppressing anybody. We merely object to celebrating a zombie myth.

        • Colonial Viper

          Your bullshit intolerance knows no bounds. If you want to go work Christmas, Good Friday and Easter Sun good for you. Don’t make everyone else.


        • adam

          *Sigh* Well religious abuse is the new normal from the whole neo-liberal crowed, it’s OK it’s been like this for the last 30 odd years, we are use to it.

          Feel free to have an atheist celebration, I don’t care. But if you mix you anti-religion gaffs with anti worker hypocrisy, then I’m going to call you on it.

          You keep attacking workers rights, so what is it?

          No ones asking you to celebrate Easter, what we are doing is asking you to recognise our right to celebrate Easter, without it being grubby.

    • I signed. Done deal. Because unions have been gutted systematically around the globe by neo liberals. Thatcherism, Reaganomics , and Rogernomics. There’s even a shot of Maggie the Witch in the vid.

    • I signed. Done deal. Because unions have been gutted systematically by neo liberals. Thatcherism, Reaganomics , and Rogernomics. There’s even a shot of Maggie the Witch in the vid.

  2. M. Gray 2

    Leave our public holidays alone shops are already opened 7 days, people need to stop being selfish and think of those that work in retail who don’t get paid much and have to work weekends.
    Also it is not acceptable for foreigners to come into our country and expect us to change our Christian based holidays. When in Rome do what the Romans do. We have to conform to other countries beliefs and culture when we travel to their countries. In some countries NZers have been jailed for abusing or mocking other countries cultural beliefs and very little sympathy has been shown by our Government and other NZers.

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    Silly and unnecessary move by National pre-election year. Conservative church going voters are going to hate this.

    • TC 3.1

      Distraction politics

    • adam 3.2

      They already losing conservative Christian voters.

      The housing issues and the war on the poor – it really is a bad look. Something associated with smug atheists and worshippers of cupidity.

    • Richard McGrath 3.3

      It’s a pathetically limp free market gesture that Labour-lite could have made in 2009.

      • adam 3.3.1

        There are no markets Richard – grow up. Capitalism is dead, and the people you and yours got into bed with killed it. The whole neo-con experiment effectively gutter capitalism, and gave us this economic bastard child.

        Your whole ideology has been proven weak and outright wrong. Libertarians like you have been pathetic in the face of corruption, and even worse at the slow corruption of freedoms by business, all in the name of profit.

        It must be gut wrenching to wake up each day and know that Libertarians were used and abused by corporations to gut society. And all your left with is a sad handful of poorly written books.

        • Richard McGrath

          You’re partly right there Adam – a succession of statist governments have undermined free speech, free exchange and property rights in NZ

          • adam

            And people like you helped them do it. The duping of Libertarians is going to go down as one of histories most ironic failures of ideology missing reality.

            • Richard McGrath

              Helped them – yeah right. We were never supported by corporations – they don’t want free markets. They want protection from competition, which the spinelessly conservative National governments gave them.

  4. Kiwiri 4

    Hah. This one is a mild aberration from the Nats but they do have to play to a section of their donors.

    Frankly, shops are open so many good days of the week/month/years that a great majority of us can surely get off our bums and get organised to shop for the things we need just before Easter Day … or wait a few more hours to drop by some shops to check out the stuff on sale.

    Actually, the last time I got caught out when places were closed, that was actually quite a boon. I was forced to go through my fridge, freezer, garage and drawers .. and found quite a lot of stuff that I had forgotten about that otherwise I would have just got into a car and drove to a shop to buy. It felt like I had won more than a Division 4 Lotto ticket!!

    And my wife thought I was being such a good boy starting on that de-cluttering project that she has been constantly reminding me.

  5. Bill 5

    Just as well the word ‘or’ is in the post title because many people would probably look at ‘family shopping’ as a good use of family time – sadly. ‘N fact, some might be a bit confused and unable to process the fact that the post title is tabling a choice.

    • Wainwright 5.1

      Never going to change if we don’t make the point nice and clearly though.

  6. I wonder if anyone among our Standard readers have heard that this government is considering worrying changes to the Gold Card.?. Some of my elderly friends have heard that the gold cards are to be changed for other type cards .
    Anyone heard anything ?.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      NATs won’t make negative changes if they are to have any hope of working with Winston.

    • kieron 6.2

      Heard something that you have to get AT hop card to work with your gold card (then the gov’t will take away gold cards at a later stage)

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      AT is dropping use of the Gold Card and putting it on their HOP cards as a concession, i.e, the pensioners will need to get a HOP card. The Elders won’t lose anything although it’s irritating that AT are still going to charge for the HOP card.

    • Richard McGrath 6.4

      Platinum cards for everyone!! Don’t worry, the workers will pay for it all.

  7. AmaKiwi 7

    I signed and forwarded the link to family and friends.

    The endless shopping hours we have now are a social disaster, especially for the lowest paid New Zealanders. We no longer have times during the week and year when we know we can get together with all of the family. Someone will always be working absurd hours to generate more profits for the multi-national retailers.

    Please sign this petition.

  8. It’s Minister Michael Woodhouse has shopped here?

  9. ElChapo 9

    You guys do realise that since it’s not a holiday, these retail workers don’t get any pay for the forced day off. It’s a forced unpaid day.

    I would prefer to choose what day I take unpaid leave on, rather than be told by govt.

    • adam 9.1

      We would like you to have the choice too, but the reality is most employers are led by the nose by the bad employers. Coupled with a government hell bent on punishing working people with excess taxes, and poor working condition. You really think people can get days off in this environment?

  10. Here we go again. Shows how we’ve been cowed for too long shafted and spat out …

  11. Swap it with Labour day so that the day set aside to celebrate workers rights is also a day where workers get a chance to rest and relax.

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