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National day of action for work rights

Written By: - Date published: 12:51 pm, October 20th, 2010 - 115 comments
Categories: Unions, workers' rights - Tags: ,

Thousands of workers are now leaving their work places to attend one of the 27 protests taking place today from Kaiatia to the Bluff against National’s draconian anti-worker policies.

This one could be big. This is the day that Kiwi workers stand up and say that they have had enough of this government attacking our wages and work conditions.

Update: Early reporting on TV3 – sounds good!

Update 2: Front of Parliament was full up. What do they usually reckon that is 5-6 thousand? Hearing the chants echoing of the Beehive like a thunderclap was awesome – Zet.

Update 3: The Herald reports “Six thousand workers packed a Manukau stadium today and spilled out into blustery sunshine to protest against new employment laws…” and “In Wellington, about 2000 to 3000 protesters attended a loud rally outside Parliament…”

Update 4: This from the CTU:

Biggest worker protests in a decade reject laws

By lunchtime more than 15,000 workers had attended stopwork meetings and rallies. 7,000 packed the TelstraClear Stadium in Auckland and 4,000 piled into Parliament Grounds. 1500 rallied in Hamilton, 800 in Hastings and 750 in Nelson. Thousands more are expected in events throughout the afternoon in many centres.

115 comments on “National day of action for work rights ”

  1. The Voice of Reason 1

    It’s looking good at the first one I’m attending (off to a provincial one later in the day). Lots of noise, lots of laughter, lots of anger too. It’s not even supposed to start for half an hour and there are plenty here already. Just heard a nurse say ‘…don’t know why I voted for him…”. That could be the theme of the day, aye?

  2. Has any other government ever had so many protests against it in a first term?

    Huge protests too, just off the top of my head and numbers from memory:

    The ACC bikers – 8,000
    The Schedule 4 March – 50,000
    The anti-Supercity march – 10,000
    The s59 referendum march – 5,000
    Today – tens of thousands

    I know there have been some more big ones too I can’t quite think what. Not to mention the numerous small ones, like when Key got booed in Levin and cried about it.

  3. Bobby 3

    As a % of the population those numbers are miniscle and just reflect the hard core activists. Get 100’000’s protesting then you might have something to crow about

    • Bright Red 3.1

      no protest in the history of NZ has turned out more than 50,000.

      Not everyone who supports a cause can or is willing to attend a protest on behalf of that cause.

      If the Left has 6,000 hardcore activists in Wellington alone they would be very happy.

      • AndyB 3.1.1

        Otago University political scientist Brian Roper estimated that between 300,000 and 500,000 New Zealanders took part in protests against the Employment Contracts Act in 1991

        • Bright Red 3.1.1.1

          those were spread over a period of time, it wasn’t turning out on a single day.

          Roper also says:

          “The ECA constituted a qualitatively more serious attack on the organising and bargaining rights of trade unions, which was borne out by the devastating impact it had on union membership,” he said.

          But he said today’s rallies might be seen by future historians as “the beginning of the end of the honeymoon period of this Government” as low income workers began to feel the impacts of this month’s GST increase and the employment law changes.

          • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.1.1

            Wow is this deliberate righty abuse of statistics a sign of their desperate tactics for the Battle of 2011?

        • Jim MacDonald 3.1.1.2

          Hey you idiot lefties, John Key has been quoted as saying:

          “I’ve seen a lot of protests in the eight years I’ve been in politics and I’ve seen a lot of ones that are a lot bigger than that”.

          He’s playing down all this. And he’s challenging you to bring out more of your comrades.

          • Vicky32 3.1.1.2.1

            So? That can be done…
            Deb

            • Jim MacDonald 3.1.1.2.1.1

              Really?

              Well, actually there is one turn-out that will matter greatly next year: at the ballot box.

              You lefties:
              Remember today well, remember 1st May 2010 – let them be firmly imprinted in your mind. Ignore the half truths from the half wits.
              And VTBO.

      • AndyB 3.1.2

        personally i don’t mind either way. i just saw that stat and thought you would like to know. have no problem with the protests, it’s our right as citizens of a free country to exercise our right to protest.

      • Bobby 3.1.3

        Say 400,000 people live in welly

        Say 300,000 of those aged over 18

        circa 2-3k turned up to protest (as per Herald website)

        so thats at the most 1% if the eligible ‘protestors’

        Feel free to argue the numbers above as they just guess-estimate but suspect they not to far off the mark

        By any definition you havent got the interest of main stream NZ = failure, particualrly given the large working population within walking distance of parliement

        Hence my point that you just got the hardcore left voters and those with nothing better to do

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.3.1

          Bill and John will be looking forwards to 1% of eligible protestors turning up in Fairness at Work marches right through to election day.

          And as momentum builds, so will the numbers. An organised mass movement is the only way to make the pollies listen.

          • Bobby 3.1.3.1.1

            Bill and John wont care….as i said get 40,000 protestors like the mining isue and you might have a chance

            200 people turned up to Queen Street march (nzherald)…and this from your so called ‘left strong hold’ now that Len in power….

            • Bright Red 3.1.3.1.1.1

              bobby. the 200 that is referred to was the activist rally in August.

              there was no rally at queen st today, it was in Manukau and 7,000 were there, spilling out the door.

              you can’t even read

              • felix

                Well you try spinning like that and see how easy it is to make out the actual words & numbers…

            • felix 3.1.3.1.1.2

              Bobby that’s not what you said at all. You said “Get 100’000′s protesting”.

              You’ve been around here long enough under your various aliases to know that people will scroll up and check when you write things like “as I said” so cut the fucking lies you fucking liar.

              p.s. if the protests are insignificant then why do care? You’re wasting a lot of energy telling us how wasted our energies are (and as usual you’ll be proved wrong this time too).

              • Bobby

                wow such aggression…..I was just using the mining example as a protest that worked

                Whether the number is 40k or 100k plus my point stands…

                Why you so scared about debating an issue? Isnt that the point of this site? Would you rather this just a big love fest of liked minded individuals so you can stroke each others ego’s and whip each other up into a frenzy?

                [lprent: Get used to it. I don’t mind reasonable levels of abuse where there is a point to why it is happening. In this case it is entirely justified because you were spinning bullshit numbers and got called on it.

                I consider that tearing into someone for making bogus statements is entirely educational. It stops the practice. If you wish to dispute the conclusions put to you then do it without appealing to the moderator (which is what you just did), and thereby wasting my time. The ‘aggression’ debating technique is a losing strategy here because to me it says that you cannot justify your argument and are trying to start a flamewar. Read the policy to find out how I deal with that. ]

                • felix

                  Why are you so scared of talking in fact instead of fantasy? If you can’t be bothered maintaining your story from one minute to the next why should anyone take the slightest bit of notice what you think?

                  And as I said: (see what I did there, fuckwit?) if the protests are insignificant then why do care?

                  Your point fails anyway as Blighty points out below.

                  • Bobby

                    Seriously why the aggression?

                    Im debating in good faith why cant you? Are you really that angry and bitter? I have been having lots of discussions today and you the first not to be polite.

                    I assume you young?

                • TightyRighty

                  it’s commonly referred to as a circle-jerk. SOP round here when something perceived as progressive happens.

                • Bobby

                  1, i never appealed to anybody

                  2. My first point was that if you 100000’s you would have something to crow about. My reference to 40000 was related to a specific example when success was achieved. I never said 100000 needed for success just that it would be a figure worth ‘crowing’ about. There no bullshit numbers

                  3. The fact you allow that sort of language and your biased rulings says a lot about yourself. Try and gain some perspective and you will gain some respect….

                  [lprent:

                  1. You did. I at least try to scan every comment, and one of the things that I look at is accusations of bad behaviour – which I usually investigate.

                  2. The reply comments to you showed that the largest protests as a percentage of population meant that your comparison was spurious.

                  3. Read the policy. Your opinion on how we run our site is neither sought nor wanted – you are a guest, not an owner. In particular read the first point in the section on self-martyrdom offences. ]

                  • Bobby

                    Spurious….I never said that the percentage of people protesting equal the percent that agree with the protestors……that’s just a spurious argument you lot used to mislead the discuss.

                    Regardless if you believe the numbers today are a sign of wide spread opposition to the law good on you…..

                    Ps: I never appealed YOU took it upon your self to investigate

                    Ps glad you implicity agreed that you biased. Self awareness is the first step to change. Well done

                    [lprent: Banned for a week. I like to reward such self-evident stupidity. ]

                    • Colonial Viper

                      These righties definitely don’t know how to be part of a larger community. No surprise there 🙄

                      Arguing back at mods, mate? I’m keen to see how long you can keep that up actually.

          • Lanthanide 3.1.3.1.2

            With the world’s press turning their attention to the RWC next year, it could work as an excellent stage for workers rights rallies.

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.3.1.2.1

              Yeah it’d be a shit if hotel beds didn’t get made, VIP boxes didn’t get meals, transport didn’t turn up, …its a wonder why they are still trying to frak with us, actually.

        • Bright Red 3.1.3.2

          the people who were there had to be union members who could get time off work under s26 of the ERA, or other people were able to get off work somehow.

          Not everyone who supports who rights is a union member (for a variety of reasons), not every union member would want to or be able to attend a protest at a given time, or they might not be able to get into Parliament in the two hour timeframe

          and workplaces are able to insist that union members not attend union meetings under s26 if there wouldn’t be adequate staff left to man the workplace.

          given all those constraints, a turnout of 5-6,000 is pretty good.

          I can only recall one protest in Labour’s 9 years that exceeded the 15,000 who have turned out around the country so far. that was the foreshore and seabed hikoi. When was the last time the Right turned out those kind of numbers?

          • Bobby 3.1.3.2.1

            All the news articles say 2 to 3k not 5k …

            The right in NZ arent big protestors – be interesting to analyse why?

            Suspect it largely due to demographics (no naive students that dont know better and who have time on there hands would be my guess).

            I remember attending a few in my days at Uni was great fun!)

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.3.2.1.1

              Ah Bobby, there’s only one count which matters and that is in 2011, and these marches are going to keep on going my friend right up to election day.

              And we don’t mind if Bill and John don’t care, its the signal we are sending to all other workers in NZ which is important. Fight fight fight

              • Bobby

                Maybe – im sure John will do something that annoys you even more by then and the protests will focus on that instead

                Hopefully its the removal of WFF and replacement by a tax free threshold for all

            • Bright Red 3.1.3.2.1.2

              Didn’t see any students at parliament, it was workers on s26.

              And the front of parliament was full, which was reported as 6,000 when the ACC protesters did the same last year.

              • Bobby

                The ‘workers’ were buses where provided to taken them to the rally?

                Where I assume they were still be paid for there time under s26?

                Sounds like a pretty good deal for them

                • Blighty

                  what do you mean ‘workers’. Are you implying that they aren’t workers because they joined a union, used s26 legally and hired buses?

                  • Bobby

                    Not implying that at all…was replicating your use of the word rather than ’employees’

                    I can ask you an equally silly question….for example,

                    “why did YOU use the word workers – are you implying non union members dont work?”

                    • Blighty

                      It was BR you were attacking, not me.

                      employees casts workers in relation to their employer – as dependents of that employer. Whereas ‘worker’ recognises that workers supply the work, which is matched with capital to create economic output.

                      Employee is more akin to ‘servant’ whereas worker recognises that workers are vital contributors to the economy that we can’t do without any more than we can do without capital.

                      No-one is saying that non-union workers are not workers.

                      People use the term ‘unemployed workers’ too, which you would find a oxymoron because you’re a tool but it recognises that people want to work and are working class but can’t get work through no fault of their own rather because there isn’t enough work to go around.

          • The Baron 3.1.3.2.2

            5,000 on the electoral finance act: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/rankin-file/news/article.cfm?c_id=758&objectid=10479495

            yeah, doesn’t really compare.

        • Vicky32 3.1.3.3

          If that 300 000 have jobs, obviously they can’t risk them by protesting, or if they are mothers in charge of little children, then they can’t disrupt their baby’s day… I know I would be out and protesting if I was physically capable! (Aside from owt else I am not in Welly any more, sadly.)
          Deb

  4. Blighty 4

    Bobby’s number games are like claiming that only 0.3% of Kiwi were offended by Paul Henry’s racism because only 1,500 made an official complaint.

    I was offended by I didn’t make an official complaint.

    I oppose National’s attacks on our work rights but I couldn’t make it to a protest.

    • Bobby 4.1

      I see the link you trying to make but its the degree of passion that matters.

      The Paul Henry issue didnt effect peoples lives to the same degree as this does. Hence why people could not be bothered to write a complaint

      For example if the Government said “we are going to ban alcohol” from 1 December

      What sort of protest numbers would you expect – IMO you would get a major uprising with 100’s of 1000’s of protestors – it would be a huge issue for mainstream NZ’ers……this issue isnt hence the small turn out

      • felix 4.1.1

        For example if the govt were to give away free beer every tuesday IMO there would be no uprising at all.

        Therefore these protests were MASSIVE (by comparison to the non-existent ones I just made up, like you did)

        Awful lot of time you’re spending here insisting that these protests are insignificant and unrepresentative. Gee I wonder why…

        • Bobby 4.1.1.1

          My example made a point – that this issue not captured the public interest.

          I gave an example of an issue that would capture public interest, i could have also mentioned the #’s that protested Vietnam, South Africa, ECA and other examples of mainstream issues

          Why i debating – why not? Its insighful, I learn things and its fun. Is there supposed to be another reason?

          You spending a lot of timing insisting the protests ARE significant – Gee i wonder why?

          • felix 4.1.1.1.1

            Please show where I said any such thing.

            And drop the “Me no typey-typey good” routine, it’s transparent and embarrassing.

          • felix 4.1.1.1.2

            p.s. At the time of writing at least 20 of the 77 comments on this thread alone are yours.

            That’s more than a quarter of all comments on this thread. Which you don’t care about.

  5. big bruv 5

    5-6 Thousand????

    Now I know why Cullen paid 1 billion dollars for a train set worth a quarter of that value.

    Labour people cannot count…….or they tell blatant lies.

    Which one is it?

    • r0b 5.1

      Hey BB – I heard it was 3 Billion dollars for a train set worth one twentieth.

      You’re right, we righties can count so much better….

    • felix 5.2

      big bludge,

      When you learn to count out one hundred dollars to pay your debt, maybe people will start taking you seriously.

      Until then it’s best to assume everything you write is fantasy and lies.

  6. True Blue 6

    Update 4: This from the CTU:

    Biggest worker protests in a decade reject laws

    By lunchtime more than 15,000 workers had attended stopwork meetings and rallies. 7,000 packed the TelstraClear Stadium in Auckland and 4,000 piled into Parliament Grounds. 1500 rallied in Hamilton, 800 in Hastings and 750 in Nelson. Thousands more are expected in events throughout the afternoon in many centres.

    and this from Stuff

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/4251106/Unions-rally-against-workplace-law-changes

    So is it 4000 or 1000 in Parliament grounds. BB is right Labour can’t count.

    [lprent: Evidentially you can’t read. The stuff article said
    More than 1000 people

    It says what the lower limit is, not what the estimate is. Vernon Small filed this article just minutes after the scheduled time the protest was meant to finish, so probably left early to write it whilst the protest was going on and people were still joining.

    Can I suggest that you learn to read what people write rather than what you wish they’d write? ]

    • graham 6.1

      i am sure if it was near 10 000 they wouldnt say over a 1000 turned up by in my experience all lefties will lie for the commen good

  7. Carol 7

    I don’t work on Wednesdays, but got on the bus for workers in my union, from more than one workplace in the area. I think I was the only one on the bus not working today. All the rest had walked off the job. The bus was full, with about half a dozen people standing (seats all taken). It was quite a cross -section of workers, and very multi-ethnic (workplaces in west Auckland) – manual and white collar/professional workers. There was a great feeling on the bus, with lots of joking and laughter.

    We got caught up in a major traffic jam as we came off the motorway in Manukau. It took about 45-55 minutes getting from the motorway to the TestraClear stadium carpark. The traffic in the area was all tied up by the rally traffic. I guess the organisers just didn’t expect so many people to attend.

    We were in a traffic queue with loads of other buses with union placards in the windows. There were also loads of cars in the queue – many of them had people in with orange or green workers jackets on, and many of the cars were full. People around me on the bus liked the way I held the little union flag out the window, blowing in the breeze. (As it turned out, that was about the only public union action I took part in today).

    We finally got into the stadium carpark, having inched painfully slowly down the roads. The area around the stadium, the car park, was chock full of busses, side-by-side and bumper-to-bumper. There was also a load of cars parked together in another area.

    We got off the bus at about 1.40pm. The rally had been scheduled to start at about 1pm. A woman with a megaphone directed us to go around to the other side of the stadium. There were people from other buses walking with us, and some buses came into the park after ours. When we got around to the other side, people started coming out of the stadium – some were quite cheerful and chanting. For a while there was some confusion as people were walking in crowds in both directions. Then the message got around to our lot, that the rally had finished. We turned around and walked back to the bus, got on the bus again, and headed home.

    The return journey was a whole lot quicker – last in, first out.

    But it seemed worthwhile. One photographer with us was disappointed he didn’t have time to get to a high position so he could photograph the sea of busses from above.

    Walking away from the bus, people thought our attempt to get to the rally had been worthwile – contributing to a show of numbers. A woman said, at her workplace, people were despondent about their futrues. They were also cynical about our government – thought Key and his government could do and say what they wanted, could screw the people, and would stll get elected again.

    I went to the rally, and all I got was a little sticker saying, “My holidays aren’t for sale”…. and a feeling that there is widespread dissatisfaction amongst many workers, about this government and the laws it’s bringing in.

    • big bruv 7.1

      “My holidays aren’t for sale”…

      So Carol, you want to take away the right of every worker to decide that for themselves?

      • Bobby 7.1.1

        What she meant is “YOUR holidays arent for sale”

        There no MY in their world

        • Carol 7.1.1.1

          I meant what I said… “My.”

          I want for all workers, a high enough wage so that they don’t feel they would need to sell their holidays. Holidays are a right that has been earned through a long struggle. And the holiday issue is a small part of a much larger, multi-faceted attack on workers rights.

          • Bobby 7.1.1.1.1

            What if they dont ‘need’ to but ‘want’ to – would you still want to stop them?

            • Carol 7.1.1.1.1.1

              There’s a reason for holidays. It’s because workers need recuperation time. Why do you want workers to be worked into the ground, just to earn a reasonable wage?

              Workers have NOT been demanding more work and less holidays. It came from Key (the man who seems to take more holidays than most), because he doesn’t want to work out how to improve workers wages… lazy on Key’s part, or he doesn’t really care about workers getting a fair wage and conditions for the work they do.

              • big bruv

                Carol

                Please stop putting words in other peoples mouths (when we are accused of that we are banned).

                Nobody said anything about workers being “worked into the ground”, the question asked of you is “why do you want to take away the rights of other workers to decide for themselves?”

                Where is the freedom in what you propose?

                [lprent: Nope, looking back in the conversation, she asked you a question based on an implication in your statement rather than reframing what you said. In fact it is exactly the same as what you did in your previous question to her. If I followed your criteria I’d have to ban you both.

                Stop wasting my time… ]

                • big bruv

                  You would not have to “waste” your time if you did not have double standards.

                  It is a simple question Iprent, one that even you should be able to understand.

                  Why does Carol want to take away the individual workers right to choose?

                  Perhaps they might be saving to buy a house, an extra weeks wages would be a big help, perhaps they have a large family and taking a weeks leave as pay might mean the difference between being able to spend some time at the beach or staying home for their holidays.

                  Why are Labour so dead against workers being able to decide for themselves?

                  • Bobby

                    If lprent was a referee she would be up from corruption charges….the double standard are amazing

                    All it achieves is driving away anybody with a counter view….if thats what she wants to achieve she should lock the site to labour party members and be done with it.

                    [lprent: We don’t drive people away with contrary views. There are lots of them here from both the right and the left – most of which I disagree with on both sides. We do work to drive away bad behaviour because we can’t be bothered reading idiots who are incapable of arguing coherently.

                    The first rule here is not to get the moderators attention. Whining about the moderation policy is about the fastest way a fast way to get it because I always answer those. I’m at my toleration level of wasting time on you.

                    It looks to me like you’re just after a self-martyrdom for arguing with the local ref – usually a binning offense in every sport I’ve ever looked at. ]

            • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.1.1.2

              No free market in labour. No deregulation of break and leave entitlements.

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.2

        Workers don’t have any rights to sell their holidays, just like they don’t have any rights to opt out of health and safety requirements.

        There will be no free market in labour, as such a free market benefits largely one party – employers, largely at the detriment of another party – workers.

        • TightyRighty 7.1.2.1

          you are a scary individual. No free market for labour means no job mobility, and therefore no social mobility. It also means that cradle to grave jobs that don’t make the most of a particular workers skills at any one point in there lives will be the norm, as opposed to minimum wage drudge also referred to as a job of last resort. ergo, all jobs will be minimum wage drudge. I’m glad this blog gave you a voice, i’d hate to think what would happen if you ran for a DHB seat. Doctors getting paid the same as nurses?

          • Colonial Viper 7.1.2.1.1

            A righty talking about Social Mobility? Don’t make me laugh.

            No free market in labour means no free market abuses of labour. Now, that wasn’t rocket science was it?

            • TightyRighty 7.1.2.1.1.1

              if i wanted you to laugh i’d say that paul henry walked into a kebab shop with six friends and said “sheesh kebabs”. the next day TVNZ received over fifteen hundred complaints from 8 sock puppets saying he was was racist for complaining about the smell and that he must be fired. apparently there were thousands more kebab consumers outraged at paul henry’s appalling comments.

              But seriously, you don’t believe in freedom of mobility, and it’s extensions, the freedoms of association and expression? you would rather curtail every persons freedom to work where they please to try and curb the excesses of the worst employers? who said the far left wasn’t extreme enough?

            • jimmy 7.1.2.1.1.2

              One word tighty, responsibility. Responsibility to future generations, responsibility to not externalize (i.e. crap) on your society more than your fair share, etc, etc.

              By the way, im gonna steal those gems there Colonial V.

              • Jim MacDonald

                Aahh.
                So the so-called “free market” prescribed to NZ thoroughly had us rogered & dug (Doug!) and inflicted a system and culture of a market free of responsibility.

                Oh yeahh. That makes sense.

                The half wit policy makers and economists who helped shove us into the free market read half the textbooks and told us half truths.
                E.g. they convinced us to be pure.
                Pure in the Kiwi dollar float. Pure in GST. Etc etc. Pure BS.

                One more term for Nat and we’ll be further down the toilet.

                Please, NZ:
                Not another term for Nat.

    • graham 7.2

      heres a question I will bet you my left nut that 95% of the crowd have never voted national so who gives a shit what the think

      • Eddie 7.2.1

        It’s called democracy, so you should care what they think.

        and if National loses even 5% of its support from last election it loses the 2011 election.

      • Daveo 7.2.2

        You don’t have any nuts graham.

  8. Bobby 8

    Isnt it my right to decide whether i need recuperation – not the governments to dictate how much i needed? Should they also start telling me to go to bed each night at 10:30 so i get a enough sleep so i rested for work?

    I have had years in which i took 1 week off – and others when i took a lot more off

    That was my decision and i much prefer ability to sell my leave at times if I can use the money / time for more important things

    • felix 8.1

      It’s not about choice bobby it’s about coercion.

      This is just another way for you and your mates to drive down wages by stealth.

      • Bobby 8.1.1

        I have no desire to drive down wages – stop talking in sound bites

        My prime desire is to maximise my own wage!

        The law distinctly bans coercion

        • felix 8.1.1.1

          Are you trying to be ironic re: “sound bites”? Look at your own comment, fool.

          Same old trolls, same old bullshit.

          Same fuckwits who always say that there’s no point in protesting, that it won’t achieve anything, and no matter how many people turn up they’ll always say it’s an insignificant number.

          Remember what they said about the mining protests? Yep, same trolls.

          • Bobby 8.1.1.1.1

            I have no problem with people protesting – its your right. More power to you.

            • felix 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Liar.

              [lprent: No point! Why is it a lie? ]

              • Bobby

                On what basis can you possibly say that?

                • felix

                  On the basis that I don’t believe you.

                  • Bobby

                    On what evidence?

                    I would say only a very small percent of nz would ever want to take away peoples right to protest….that normally a communist not democratic trait

                    • felix

                      You said you have no problem with people protesting.

                      I don’t believe you. More than a quarter of the comments on this thread are yours. You obviously have a problem with this protest or you wouldn’t have spent the last six hours writing about it.

                      And don’t demand evidence from me you fucking troll.
                      I’m not here to play your stupid games.

                    • Bobby

                      Felix, this is all getting a bit pointless. I here to debate the issue not person so will retire and let u take your obvious anger and frustration out on something else

                      B.

                    • felix

                      No you’re not. You’re here to distract attention from the central issues and create the illusion of a chorus of opposition.

                      You’re not fooling anyone.

  9. Bed Rater 9

    Can someone tell me why the following is an issue:

    *Worker takes job, is entitled to four weeks AL as per legislation, or roughly 8%
    *Worker decides (or is ‘coerced into’ in this worst case scenario) to cash in their fourth week, and therefore receives 5 days additional pay into their paycheque.
    * Worker earmarks this additional money and puts it aside.
    * Worker later takes unpaid leave and uses the money they put aside to offset the temporary drop in income.

    Sounds fair enough to me.. Have I missed something?

    • lprent 9.1

      Pretty obvious…

      Employer refuses unpaid leave and if the employee takes it anyway, either fires them for not turning up for work or gives them a warning preparatory to firing them.

      Obviously a good employer wouldn’t do this. However most legislation (and especially labour law) is there to prevent the arseholes from screwing around without consequences. Of course the NACT’s could put into the legislation that the employer is required to give unpaid leave when requested – but I doubt that they would. After all they don’t want people taking that extra weeks holiday.

      • Carol 9.1.1

        Doesn’t the employer have the right to tell a worker when they can and when they can’t take their paid and unpaid leave? They do in most jobs I’ve been in.

        • lprent 9.1.1.1

          Yes they do. The legal structure specifies how much paid leave has to be given during a specified period, but permission has to be sought and obtained from the employer for the specified times. Giving permission for unpaid leave is completely up to the employer.

          It has always been a pain for me when I have had an employer that chooses to have a shutdown over xmas because I don’t want to have holidays then. I prefer them in March/April or Sept/October when the weather is better for tramping or prior to an election so I can get some coding/organizing done.

          But I usually have problems even taking holidays – for some reason I’m always on the ‘critical path’ because there is more work for my particular skills than there is time available. The holidays I can usually leverage. But what does piss me off is that a number of my employers have insisted that I don’t do jury service. When I tell them that I have the notice they’re insistent on sending letters in. The one time I did manage to get there, I wasn’t picked 🙁

          • Vicky32 9.1.1.1.1

            “But what does piss me off is that a number of my employers have insisted that I don’t do jury service. ”
            So it becomes their decision! That’s just not right…

        • big bruv 9.1.1.2

          Ah Carol, there you are.

          Now, can you please tell me why you are so scared of letting workers decide for themselves if they want to cash in their fourth week of annual leave?

          What is wrong with workers have the freedom of choice?

          • Maynard J 9.1.1.2.1

            In essence, to have freedom, you need an equal relationship. To give an extreme example, we could buy a cake together, and then I aggressively hold a gun to your head and suggest you’re completely free to have some cake. Go on. I dare ya…

            So freedom of choice is not a black-and-white affair you’ll no doubt pretend it to be.

            In employment, some workers have genuine choice. I have it, but then I’m a specialist, have reasonable employment prospects if required, and I also have no dependents. (Relatively) young and (relatively) free 🙂

            Someone supporting a family, in a job where they can’t afford to lose their livelihood and might not be able to get another job easily, someone in that position lacks freedom. If told by their employer that they really can’t be spared that extra week, they will not have a genuine choice.

            I’m not suggesting that employers will break the law in most cases (there will always be a few, just like there will be a few who take employers for a ride), but annoy the boss and your prospects of a raise or a promition go out the window. You might start getting the bad shifts. There are any number of ways you could be made to suffer, some minor, but enough to make it not worth the fight. You make the ‘choice’ you don’t want, and miss out on the leave you wanted.

            Choice isn’t so when you’re over a barrel.

            All employment law couched in the mantra of ‘choice’ can be turned around to be an avenue for exploitation where the employment relationship isn’t equal.

            Genuine choice is fine, no one has a problem with that. It’s what that choice looks like in reality that concerns some people.

            It’s a hard one, this. I’d like to be able to make that choice actually (having no dependents means i’m keen to work and get the money!), but on the balance I’d support not having that choice because I recognise that others won’t. That’s what makes me a leftie though! I guess you’d think otherwise (if you don’t dismiss my argument out of hand).

    • The Voice of Reason 9.2

      Have you missed something? Yep, this bit is wrong:

      “Worker decides (or is ‘coerced into’ in this worst case scenario) to cash in their fourth week, and therefore receives 5 days additional pay into their pay cheque.”

      The boss and you negotiate the payment. 5 days holiday might be worth 5 days pay to you, but that won’t be how your boss sees it. You’ll end up compromising away part of its value to get the dosh. Poorer paid workers will have greater need for extra cash, but bugger all bargaining power. So they’ll be shortchanged ruthlessly.

      And workers asking for a pay rise will be told no, but if you want some more money, I’ll give you a few hundy for that 4th weeks leave. Take it or leave it, son.

  10. Sookie 10

    I went to the rally in Dunedin, despite being a professional who’s pretty happy with my employer (who has already opted to reject adopting the 90 day policy if it becomes law, and good on them for that). It was pretty well attended for a notoriously apathetic city. The entire staff of Hillside workshops was there, and the EPMU guy gave a real old school rabble rousing speech about jobs for Kiwis in relation to the Kiwirail trains debacle. I was pretty impressed at the broad spectrum of people there, it was certainly not ‘rent a communist’ as the RWNJ’s like to claim.

    A logical implication the munters in Parliament have neglected to think about, and something I mentioned in my submission, is the effect this 90 day policy will have on skills shortages in professional fields. Job mobility will decrease, as people like me will simply not bother shopping around for another job in case they end up with an incomptent arsewipe for a boss who doesn’t like their face or tie and decides to sack them. If the economy picks up, recruiting is going to be a problem. It will be too much of a risk to move jobs if you have a mortgage and kids to pick up another few grand, or if you fancy a change. Stupid NACT is stupid.

  11. More and more kiwi are facing the no win battle of not being able to repay debt. Watch these protests to get more intense as the anger is growing fast.

  12. graham 12

    News Flash
    A bunch of employees took a 2 hour paid lunch break to moan
    sounds like a normal day except with a longer lunch break

    is that all you have

    • Eddie 12.1

      grow up. what were the EFA protests except a few hundred rish guys talking a long lunch and having a walk?

      A protest is a demonstration by a sector of the community of its dissatisfaction.

    • come get some 12.2

      and what was the job summit? a days paid leave?

    • Daveo 12.3

      They should have had a whinge on a blog like you no-nuts.

    • Colonial Viper 12.4

      I think Graham is demonstrating that he is a righty who doesn’t care about the opinons of the workers who are the ones who actually add value to the productive, tradeable economy.

      • graham 12.4.1

        employees in this country are cowards
        I owe 10 million 2 bad seasons i am shaged
        I have had 1 day off in 6 months
        I even had to work on the day of my dads funeral
        When i see lazy unionists working as hard as me then i will treat them will respect

        • Vicky32 12.4.1.1

          Oh dear. How sad. Never mind! (You could have gone to your Dad’s funeral, it was your choice.)

          • graham 12.4.1.1.1

            i did num nuts
            i started work at 3am finished at 10am
            then got back to the farm at 7pm to deal with the vet about sick cows and setting up shead for herd testing next day
            home by 9pm that night
            when your balls are on the line you work hard
            something that most losers here wouldnt understand

  13. George.com 13

    I look forward to John Key trying to smile and wave todays protests away. He’ll try.

  14. TightyRighty 14

    good to see unions costing us $600m worth of investment. The protest against the protest was hilarious, and well targeted.

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      National’s bad management, non existent leadership and constant targetting of the workers who create economic value is destroying our productive economy. The Battle for 2011 is on.

  15. Jum 15

    JKeyll said about 1,000 outside Parliament; actually 5-6000. JKeyll’s such a Hider of the truth.

    Considering he’s a moneytrader and he can’t count spells trouble for New Zealand.

    Couldn’t or didn’t want to warn us of an impending recession given he must have been told by his monetary contacts in moneytraderland/or he’s not as clever as he paints, or his Crosby Textors paint, him to be.

    The better outcome is the media coverage. The picture is on the telly; the commentary does not matter much. The picture tells 5-6000 words.

  16. Murray 16

    Film workers then went to picket outside a planned meeting in central Wellington at which Actors’ Equity members were to discuss their priorities for negotiations.
    Ad Feedback

    But Council of Trade Unions president Helen Kelly said the crowd was “in a lynch-mob mood thanks to Richard Taylor, who has obviously wound them up like springs” and actors had to call the meeting off. “It was too dangerous.”

    Looks like the union has a problem with protests, When the protest is against them
    An Industry being destroyed by the greed of unions.

    • The Voice of Reason 16.1

      “An Industry being destroyed by the greed of Peter Jackson.”

      All fixed for ya, Murray

      • Carol 16.1.1

        If NZ loses the filiming of The Hobbit, it will because other countries offered double the financial incentive that NACT has been offering. But NACT and their compliant media are trying to shift the blame to the actors’ union.

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/film/4255670/Hobbit-looks-headed-overseas
        Other countries had offered a one-off deal that is double New Zealand’s 15 per cent tax rebate for films.

        Typical NACT & MSM behaviour – blame everyone else for NACT’s failing policies, and for the growing opposition to them from Kiwis. This is because NACT are stuck with a failing ideology and have no new ideas.

      • Murray 16.1.2

        Yea right! Not exactly a good look for a national day of action for workers rights when Helen Kelly is exposed as a bullying thug slagging off protesting workers.

  17. Jum 17

    Anyone with two braincells to string together (which is why I’m explaining it to you Murray) can see what the game plan here is.

    JKeyll and Jerry want to destroy the unions. They are willing to damage our tourism industry and destroy the filming here in order to do it. The film industry want to control the actors’ equity but interestingly they said to Helen Kelly that the actors’ equity perfect right to negotiate wasn’t really the cause of their decision to relook at a location for The Hobbit. Jerry called her a liar. I’d believe Helen Kelly over that hitman any day. Also, the film company and the government knew days before that the Actors’ Equity had agreed with them to call off the discussions and that there would be no industrial action but were asked not to announce it publicly – that was cynical nasty manipulation of a union that was dealing fairly with workers’ interests and the film company and govt.

    Keep your eyes on the ball Murray. The unions of New Zealand are the target. You know this of course because you are part of the spin machine sent to do it.

    Looked at dispassionately Malcolm said all the Actors’ Equity group asked for was a meeting to discuss workers’ issues. That’s all. They don’t know where the squall came from, but I do. The government found the ideal place to start their attack on unions, apart from what they’re already doing. Peter is seen as an icon, gets whipped up into a frenzy and forgets his roots – he’s made his money now he just wants to play with his hobbits – workers have a right to ask questions. If Peter doesn’t understand that, then he’s been spoilt in NZ. Proves beyond doubt that NZ is seen as a place where you can get your workers cheaper than elsewhere. John “I’d love to see wages drop” Key is getting his way.

    It’s disgusting that workers are being manipulated in this way. It will get worse and it will be important to force media to publicise it. The closing down of all avenues of a watching brief on this government such as archives is a very dangerous situation coming to us courtesy of a controlling government.

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