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One law for the rich

Written By: - Date published: 9:10 am, November 20th, 2014 - 77 comments
Categories: business, class war, human rights - Tags: ,

Politicians can wreck economies and get a knighthood and a cosy diplomatic post. Bankers can loose billions and get a government handout and nice fat bonuses. But, as always, it’s different for us ordinary folk:

Workers charged for petrol drive-offs

Low-paid workers at a petrol station convenience store have been docked hundreds of dollars after customers fled without paying.

Kerry McIvor, who left in disgust from Masterton’s Night ‘n Day store, which also operates a Gull service station, said: “It came out of my wages without me knowing. I asked him [the boss] and he says: It happened on your shift, so it’s your fault . . . I was ropeable.”

Masterton Night ‘n Day franchisee Nick Lucas defended the “drive-offs” policy as standard industry practice. “When an employee makes a mistake, there are repercussions.”

But employment lawyer Andrew Scott-Howman said passing on the costs of customers’ dishonesty to an employee could be illegal.

77 comments on “One law for the rich ”

  1. ghostwhowalksnz 1

    Dont they have pre pay on their pumps, especially on overnight shifts.

    If I was an working on this arrangement, those pumps would be locked until they had coughed up the cash.

    No money, keep walking

    • Areobubble 1.1

      Agreed. Companies should not be allowed to stick their employees up, which is effectively what happens. Workers have no say about the process so no responsibility for it. Its just theft in my opinion, the boss is stealing alledgely imho.

      Sure where the worker has the keys to the till.

    • Craig H 1.2

      Apparently the owner doesn’t allow the use of prepay because prepay usually means customers only purchase fuel, and he loses money on fuel-only sales…

  2. tinfoilhat 2

    “But employment lawyer Andrew Scott-Howman said passing on the costs of customers’ dishonesty to an employee could be illegal.”

    Could be illegal ??

    If this isn’t illegal from an employment law perspective we’re living in the twilight zone !

  3. Marksman33 3

    Correct me if I’m wrong but I was always under the impression that business loaded somewhere around 5 percent onto costs to allow for theft. These clowns are double dipping as usual.

  4. Michael 4

    It is unlawful for an employer to make deductions like this from employees’ pay. However, the law is not enforced because employers have too much power. We used to have a Labour Party that stood up to abuses like this.

    • irascible 4.1

      We used to have Trade Unions that were able to stand up to such abuses on behalf of their members. Expect more of these situations occurring now that “Dear Leader” and his cronies have changed the employment law to totally emasculate the Unions and the workers.

  5. DH 5

    It’s times like this I struggle to understand how this country could have fallen so far.

    This is serious, docking workers pay is a big step on the path to bonded labour.

    The apathy shown by authorities so far is rather foreboding. This should be cleared up immediately with an emphatic statement from the relevent Govt body as to whether it’s illegal or not and what they’re going to do about it.

  6. millsy 6

    This means that anyone working in retail could have their pay docked if something gets shoplifted on their watch.

    A precedent has been set here.

    • left for deadshark 6.1

      no, the employee has to agree.Only govt fines and family support going out,you can not contract out of the law.

      edit: lawyer to talk with that plonker on radio live,after eleven.

      ps may also talk with Andrew Little

      • millsy 6.1.1

        If that employer can do it, others can. And will.

        • minarch 6.1.1.1

          They can get away with it because the staff being victimised will be on work visas that depend on their employers support, They will be too scared to speak up about being robbed by their crooked employers in case they loose their jobs and their visas get revoked

  7. TheContrarian 7

    I’m wondering what these guys are meant to do to stop people from driving off without paying. Leap in front of the car? Pull a shotgun?

    • DH 7.1

      I’m wondering at your line of thinking. The corollary to that argument would be if they could stop the driveoffs, and did not, then it would be ok to dock their pay.

      This should be a simple black & white issue of right and wrong. Should employers be permitted to dock workers pay? Absolutely bloody not, not under any circumstances. This is the 21st century, not the 19th.

      • McFlock 7.1.1

        I agree, but Contrarian also raises an interesting point as to whether the employer’s sins include expecting workers to compromise their own safety in order to save him a couple of bucks, and whether the employer should be culpable if a worker used excessive force in order to protect the bosses’ petrol.

        Basically, the employer has heaped so many types of wrong into his little dictatorial escapade that one could list them forever. But yeah, I think that pretty much at the top of the list is your point about bonded labour.

        “I owe my soul to the company store” is strangely apt when the company is a store.

      • greywarshark 7.1.2

        @ DH
        That is the $64 million question????????????????????????

        Blacklist Night n Day Masterton!! And let’s hear from anyone else who has this sort of disgraceful robbery from their wages.

      • TheContrarian 7.1.3

        I’m not making an argument. I’m wondering what it is the employees are expected to do to stop a drive off.

        • McFlock 7.1.3.1

          I suspect that the employer doesn’t care. After all, he’s got his money.

          Hmmm. I wonder if the employer interprets issues around PAYE for the docked wages in the same way as the IRD? After all, apparently the docked wages must cumulatively run into the thousands based on that report.

    • Tracey 7.2

      Of course they should, money before lives… Havent you heard the Pm’s pronouncement on the peaceful takeover of NZ in return for capital?

  8. Tom Gould 8

    Hold the front page, a nasty boss gets caught being nasty. Has Key offered to change to law to protect this one yet?

  9. vto 9

    This was tried on me many years ago when the employer expected that I should pay if the cheque from one of his customers bounced ….. yet I was required to accept the cheques …..

    arsehole

    a cheque bounced and he was stared down, but I was highly pissed that he thought it ok

    what on earth goes on in the minds of these employers?

    Also, if the employee is carrying the losses then the employee is entitled to the profits as well …
    … as McFlock says above, this case and this employer has it wrong on so very many fronts

  10. Policy Parrot 11

    Had this happen to me when I was an employee at a service station. (Caltex – in Christchurch)
    Usually I was on sole charge, so to avoid paying for the drive-off, which I frankly found offensive but as a part-permanent employee in frequent need of extra shifts it was not in my interest to offend the employer, I would usually try manage the till in a way so that it was up by the amount that the drive-off cost, and then ring it off and pretend like nothing happened – without charging the remaining customers any extra; e.g. there are a lot of things/services they charge for that use up very little resources/inventories per individual item, i.e. coffees, LPG bottle top-ups – and just ring them up as cash-outs.

    As an additional extra – it happened once when the owner was self-manning the site, and he threw a brick at the car’s rear window – smashing it – are employees really expected to do that as a deterrent?

  11. Draco T Bastard 12

    An interesting observation from Trotter:

    But what did that mean? According to Robertson, it meant reaching out to small businesses and entrepreneurs. Such sentiments were bound to set alarm-bells ringing in the ears of Labour’s socialists. As any trade union official will tell you, it is the small businessmen, the entrepreneurs, who most commonly find themselves on the receiving end of the Employment Court’s negative judgements. No social class hates the trade unions with as much passion as the petit bourgeoisie.

    my bold

    And this is what we potentially have here along with that petit bourgeoisie refusing to take responsibility and shifting the risk of the business on to the employee.

    • Tracey 12.1

      It will be put down to one wayward employer. Cant tar all by this… Contrast this with treatment of beneficiaries cos a tiny number rip off the system… Or the treatment of workers cos a tiny number are lazy…

      Should be a good chance for Little to let some workers know they can be protected

      • Colonial Rawshark 12.1.1

        Labour *has* to bring right-minded community focussed small business people, contractors and the self employed on side. Many of these people are the new precariat, shop owners and owner drivers being fucked over by landlords and one sided contracts.

    • sabine 12.2

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Petite_bourgeoisie

      This guy is a thief. I understand you to use the term derogatory, but in essence most of us are petite bourgeoisie or at least like to think we are. Middle NZ is the english term. But this guy is simply a thief. He commits the crime of wage theft and should have the book thrown at him.

      He can have his pump on pre pay – problem solved
      He can prosecute those that don’t pay after al, they are on camera – problem solved
      he can write of the loss at the end of year taxes – no loss occurred

      instead he deducts wages from his staff. Wage theft.

  12. greywarshark 13

    But employment lawyer Andrew Scott-Howman said passing on the costs of customers’ dishonesty to an employee could be illegal.
    Could be illegal? Now the employee on minimum wages has to take responsibility for the owner? This is disgusting. The business must take the knocks as well as the profits. If the owner doesn’t like the way the staff are working let him do the work himself.
    There has been a great change since the days of a business being responsible for its employees.

    I saw this in the Press in conjunction with a case where a man was electrocuted from touching a metal wall which was not earthed. It was the side of a refrigerated unit and the earth wire had been disconnected apparently so that a repair job would be cheaper.

    The police have to charge the actual person who did the ‘repair’ and the owner of the business didn’t seem to appear in the frame. WTF. Don’t businesspeople get held to account for anything? How come everything has to be sheeted home to the worker. The business owner has a responsibility to ensure that the premises are being run safely. Then he/she wouldn’t be employing someone doing dodgy things, which wasn’t picked up by an owner or manager’s inspection. Now a man is dead and who is to blame. Pontius Pilate!

    • Ross 13.1

      My thoughts exactly. Actually, there’s the “could be illegal” thing (WTF), and the fact that it was an employment lawyer who said it! Doesn’t he know? Again, WTF.

      • greywarshark 13.1.1

        @ Ross
        An employment lawyer could presumably advise businesses just as much a workers.
        He/she is probably waiting to see if there is some new legisation or deemed regulations coming along the pipeline before making a firm unequivocal statement.

      • McFlock 13.1.2

        the other thing is to get a lawyer to categorically state something without equivocation can be impossible, especially if they are not directly familiar with all aspects of the case.

        “Could be illegal” is at the other end of the scale from “no apparent legal argument against it” 🙂

    • Draco T Bastard 13.2

      Don’t businesspeople get held to account for anything?

      Nope. My nephew was telling me about a couple of workers who got fined $4500 each for working dangerously after the developer refused to get proper scaffolding put in. They didn’t have any choice as they needed the work/money. The developer didn’t even get a slap over the wrist with a wet bus ticket.

      All the laws over the last 20 years and especially with National in power has shifted all the expenses on to the workers and off the businesses while shifting the power onto the businesses. The businesses do well but the workers are fucked.

  13. Tracey 14

    I expect there will be axcall for taxpayer funded cameras so this employee doesnt have to lose wages. Thats the compassionate side of the govt.

    • Murray Rawshark 14.1

      GCSB cameras in all private vehicles. That would stop innocent motorists being suspected of fuel theft. There’s really no other way to do it. If you’re not stealing fuel you have nothing to worry about.

      Cortina (Velox for me) back seats will never be what they used to.

  14. The lost sheep 15

    Take a deep breath, and relax.
    The Wages Protection Act (1983) only allows deductions from an employees pay outside of those required by Law, if ‘it is for a lawful purpose’, and ‘the employee authorises such a payment in writing’. In such cases the employee can withdraw consent at any time.

    So as this is not a lawful purpose, (you cannot make one person liable for the theft of another!), and the employees did not authorise the deductions in writing, the current law is perfectly adequate to protect the employee.

    All the employee needs to do is pick up the phone and dial 0800 20 90 20, and The Labour Dept will sort the situation out.

    This is merely evidence that there are some employers out there who are ignorant of, or willing to abuse the law.
    It does not in any way suggest their is a lack of protection for workers in the law or one law for the rich and one for the poor.

    • greywarshark 15.1

      lost sheep
      I think it is an indication that, from the observed incidents, people are giving up belief in the law being fair for all.

      The chap who left may be able to apply for constructive dismissal or whatever its called when you are made to believe that you are not wanted as an employee and can expect unfair treatment. Is there an employment lawyer in the house who might like to comment on the employee’s position on receiving an amount recompensing for his expenses and hurt for this unjust highwayman treatment, and to regain the purloined amount of wages? And for all the others so affected.

    • Tracey 15.2

      First, your name is apt.

      I wonder why the employee didnt know they could call the Labour Dept?

      Sutton got a press conference orchestrated and attended by his boss and a rep from the pm office, a hug and gratitude… For sexually harrassing an employee. To our knowledge no pay lost.

      This guy had to go the media.

      Yup no different employment conditions for the rich and the poor.

    • RedLogix 15.3

      and the employees did not authorise the deductions in writing, the current law is perfectly adequate to protect the employee.

      Does anyone know if the specific employment contract concerned here does in fact have this provision? In other words has the employee already signed away authority for such deductions to be made?

      All the employee needs to do is pick up the phone and dial 0800 20 90 20, and The Labour Dept will sort the situation out.

      Is this person on a 90 day trial? And even if not – how long do you think most minimum pay workers would last after taking your advice?

      And note that the employee concerned has already walked from the job – presumably in an entirely justified disgust and humiliation at being treated like this. Does that count as ‘constructive dismissal’?

      This is merely evidence that there are some employers out there who are ignorant of, or willing to abuse the law.

      True. Which is why employment regulations exist. Unfortunately when you have a government that has spent the last six years weakening them, and tipping the balance increasingly in favour of the employers – this has the effect of encouraging and enabling the incompetent and meaner category of employers at the bottom end.

    • Draco T Bastard 15.4

      All the employee needs to do is pick up the phone and dial 0800 20 90 20, and The Labour Dept will sort the situation out.

      Yes but how many people actually know that? I think you’ll find that it’s less than 10% of the population.

      The employees doing this get away with it due to peoples ignorance and their fear of losing their job.

      • b waghorn 15.4.1

        There are lots of training courses that people new to work or changeing roles go on/are sent on, wouldn’t it be good if employment law was a manditory part of it if they want government funding.

    • DH 15.5

      “It does not in any way suggest their is a lack of protection for workers in the law or one law for the rich and one for the poor.”

      What planet are you living on? The universal theme of every person so far claiming to have pay deducted is they didn’t complain out of fear for their jobs. Most look to have been casuals and likely on part time contracts, their jobs would hang on a thread as it is.

      For anyone in that situation to contact the Labour department they’d need a guarantee of discretion from the dept and a promise they wouldn’t be identified as the complainant. How many people would have that level of faith in the bureaucrats (partly) responsible for Pike River?

      And if someone did call the Labour Dept what would the dept do? Prosecute the employer, fine them or slap them with wet bus ticket? Would the bureaucrats follow up to make sure no-one was subequently fired by a vengeful employer? Would they check to make sure no new ‘deductions’ were being introduced to replace the old ones? Would they hell…

      So yeah, it is about laws for the rich and laws for the poor. The poor can’t afford to call the law.

      • Draco T Bastard 15.5.1

        The poor can’t afford to call the law.

        QFT

        • greywarshark 15.5.1.1

          Oliver Goldsmith smithed some words that continue to be pure gold and ring true:
          Law grinds the poor, and rich men rule the law.

    • Lefty 15.6

      The Labour Department (MBIE now) will run around and give the employer a big cuddle.

      That’s how it actually works nowadays.

    • Ross 15.7

      So this employer STOLE money from an employee because someone stole from him? I’ll look forward to him being arrested and charged for the theft. Was he ignorant of the law? Tough. He still stole money from his employee and ignorance is no defense.

  15. The lost sheep 16

    “I wonder why the employee didnt know they could call the Labour Dept?”

    When free information and assistance on employees rights and protections are so widely and openly available from so many different sources?
    Absolutely beats me.

    He knew how to contact the media though, so Dept. of Labour help will be on the way, and as a bonus his employer will have public humiliation to deal with in addition to the legal consequences he most certainly faces.

    But I guess if you are cynical enough you can read a conspiracy into anything…

    • Tracey 16.1

      Oh well, if most employers are good folk, they wont mind an urgent law change to make sure this cant happen again.

      Do you think the employer ought to be able to deduct for this kind of thing, you didnt say.

    • Murray Rawshark 16.2

      What bloody conspiracy? An asshole employer and a useless Labour Department under a Tory government that despises workers is all I see. Where’s your bloody conspiracy?

      The prick of an employer should be charged with theft and never be allowed to run a business again.

    • greywarshark 16.3

      @ the lost sheep
      He’s a poor little lamb who has lost his way bah bah bah. (Sort of song.)
      You do go on you ignorant RW whiner.

      • The lost sheep 16.3.1

        Mate, if all you want to do is abuse me, surely you can be more creative than that!

        I spent 20 years working on farms and in freezing works and on fishing boats, so I know how to take a better shot than that limp-wristed slap with a damp hanky.

        Man up!

        • greywarshark 16.3.1.1

          @ lost sheep
          If you want to be a real man, of the people who do the hard yeards. Don’t find things to be negative about. Workers need assistance not a sneer or snide remark. Otherwise you are coming from the business or management side and lack real interest in the worker’s situation.

          • The lost sheep 16.3.1.1.1

            I am only commenting on this case because I HAVE assisted an employee with a very similar case…..

            By the way, I see the CTU lawyer agrees with my analysis of the illegality of this case.

            I guess he must be an ignorant RW idiot as well. Either that or I am right.

  16. The lost sheep 17

    Did you read my posts Tracey?
    You don’t NEED an urgent law change because this kind of deduction is not ‘a legal purpose’ under current law.
    Even if the employee had agreed in writing to the deduction, (and they didn’t), it would still not become a legal purpose, as there are no legal principles that would allow you to hold the employee liable for an action such as a drive away petrol theft which is clearly outside their control!

    Of course I don’t think an employer should be able to do this. And they can’t.

    Follow the story to it’s conclusion, see that I am right, and then come back and agree that what ever you think in general – this case is not evidence of a general lack of employee protection in law.

    • McFlock 17.1

      Of course I don’t think an employer should be able to do this. And they can’t.

      You mean that they can’t do this thing of which multiple instances have been documented in the media report that prompted this post.

      You suffer the misapprehension that just because something is illegal, everyone who is a victim of it feels they have the power to be able to seek help from the authorities, even if they know this help exists.

    • adam 17.2

      Thelostsheep, again you talk from a position of privilege – I know it was illegal and I also know if you phone up the labour department to get advice on this – all they will do is tell you what the law says – it is very unlikely they will take a case like this on.

      The ability to defend oneself from this practice is another issue altogether. Or indeed just getting your wages back, both are a fight – one which in a highly individualised workplace like a petrol station – will in all probability, be bloody difficult.

      And yes, you can go to mediation, and then the courts. But, he courts are all but broken, and the process is long winded and can be quite disempowering. With the delays and other tactics, an employer can be quite a prick using the legal system – even when they are in the wrong.

      Why is it that employers can not be honest? Why is it that petty managers and owners feel they can wilfully break the law? I think thelostsheep, you need to ask what is the driver for this type of behaviour by small business.

      • Tracey 17.2.1

        He knows, and he will soon agree that if this govt were consistent we must now bring in instant fines to make sure malingering employers like this get the message.

    • Tracey 17.3

      The employer has just done this. The law MUST be failing. We need huge instant fines on such an employer, or did i miss that part in your treatise?

    • Melody 17.4

      From what I heard on Campbell Live, the union rep was saying that some employers try to drop in a ‘general deduction’ clause to cover themselves for all eventualities.

      Vulnerable workers in need of $$$ have little choice but to sign these sorts of contracts.

    • Murray Rawshark 17.5

      The Constitution of the US and A protects citizens from all sorts of things. THey still happen.
      The Constitution of the Soviet Union was widely accepted to be one of the best in the world. On paper.
      If the employee takes money from the till, what happens? The employer has far better protection under the law than the employee.

  17. Dissuasion 18

    It’s common practice among the likes of fast food and supermarkets to force staff to pay in the difference if their tills are short. Of course said employee’s don’t get the reverse treatment if their tills are over.

  18. Areobubble 19

    If employees were force to pay for driveoff thefts, then surely if the petrol were all too disappear over night then the manager would be committing an offense if they inform Police there was a theft. This would open the manager up to breaching their own duty of care for assets in deinsuring themselves, stopping the company from claiming insurance.

  19. Paul 20

    From the article.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/63361758/Workers-charged-for-petrol-drive-offs

    Scared workers.
    Personal attacks on workers who complain.
    Pay at $13.75 an hour.
    10 hours shift without a break.

    What does this say about industrial relations in this?

    “Three other former workers backed the complaints but asked not to be named. One, docked about $300 for two to three drive-offs, received a written warning after complaining.
    “It felt more like a personal attack . . . it made me feel really horrible.” She said that for a young female working alone at 4am, stopping a drive-off was near impossible. “It’s not like we’re going to run out on to the forecourt and stop the cars.”
    Another, paid $13.75 an hour and docked $50 for one drive-off, said: “I was doing a 10-hour shift without a break . . . I turned around and the customer had left the pump hanging and he’d scarpered.”
    McIvor said surveillance footage identified some drive-off culprits but Lucas showed little interest in pursuing them.

  20. karol 21

    This was what happened when I worked as a cashier for a Texaco petrol station in London in the late 70s.

    I think ti was casual work. I did this cashier work when I first arrived in London and was waiting for a teaching job. It didn’t occur to me that I could complain, but I needed the money at that time, and was fairly young.

    All the cashiers had the same conditions. We had to count and record all the merchandise on display when we signed on and off – so they could check losses/sales against out ill records. I actually did pretty OK.

    There was one guy who worked the night shift who regularly had loads of money deducted from his pay. And he also was held up by gun while serving at the night window – not safe or desirable work.

    The manager was a sleaze. i guess these days his behaviour could be the result of a sexual harassment complaint – he did things like grab the belt/top of my trousers/jeans to pull me towards him when he was talking to me.

    But also, when he was around he used to listen to us/or watch us through a sound system or two-way mirror. We were supposed to promote oil when people bought petrol – and basically tell them they needed oil and charge it to them before they could complain. All pretty nasty. Ii just couldn’t bring myself to do it, so he kept telling me off.

    Fortunately got teaching work before too long.

  21. Dont worry. Be happy 22

    Gull got back to me within an hour. Say they are in contact with both the franchisee and the worker. More to come

    • Tracey 22.1

      Gull and the managers company said it is not policy. Chap dodged questions by saying he is bound by confidentiality to gull and company. Gull spojesman said it is unacceptable.

      Will they yank the franchise to show their disapproval

  22. s y d 23

    facebook has some interesting butt covering, buck passing corporate denial on this happening in real time.

    Gull deflecting the **** onto Night’n’Day, who are blaming the franchise holder.

    but a quick check of what the franchise holder gets is set out pretty clearly

    http://www.nightnday.co.nz/franchisees/what-you-get

    and includes “all employment requirements”.

    campbell live should be good.

  23. RedBaronCV 24

    This service station has a camera and most do so they can identify and pursue the drive offs which is what he should be doing. I hope his employees now complain about wages theft. he also took money for a broken printer according to the story.

    Frankly I hope the whole world descended on this joker this morning. The IRD to check his PAYE and wages records, The Health & safety lot to check WTF he is doing leaving a female (or any employee ) unsupported at 4.00a.m, the labour dept to see why he isn’t paying wages correctly and allowing breaks. Immigration to check employee status, the cops because he is thieving from his employees, his franchise holder, the petrol supplier and his insurance company because any business style insurance is going to be under threat from the disgruntled employees. And I hope his customers stay away in droves. Of course any employee who left would be benefit sanctioned and does Winz make up the shortfall when they don’t have enoiugh to live on that week?

  24. venezia 25

    Well Campbelllive is onto it. They asked onscreen for anyone who has had this experience of employers deducting money to cover driveoffs to contact them. Apparently heaps of people have. So wait and see what happens next – hopefully this sort of exposure will flush out how widespread the practice actually is.

  25. NZJester 26

    As long as the National Government keeps giving the bosses all the power, they will think they can do what they want by adding in all sorts of illegal clauses to contracts.
    After the last big scandal of all those bosses who got caught out not giving employees breaks they had been legally entitled to, what did National do about it, they decided to change the law to allow that formally illegal practice of making employees work through there breaks legal if it is in their contract.
    They took the employers side instead of punishing those employers and enforcing the right of workers to have a break.
    They ignored the potential problems of possible increases in work accidents happening in the future due to tired overworked employees because employers did not want to give employees breaks.
    The Government basically endorsing that formally illegal practice by proposing a law change has employers thinking that they just need to make something wide spread in contracts and the National Government will try and change the law to make a common practice legal.
    Will they make the deduction for inventory loss from employee wages legal in the future? Knowing this Government I think they would try if the thought they could get away with it.
    You can bet if a thief does get caught and the money is actually paid through the courts for the goods the employer would just keep it and not return it to the employee either.
    As those losses can also be written off in taxes are the employers actually getting extra profit for these type of thefts meaning it is in there interest to set up the situation to make theses kinds of things more likely to happen?

  26. Maui 27

    This system is f…..
    Wanting a revolution pronto.

  27. RedBaronCV 28

    Well the Night & day franchisor and Gull should make it a condition that the staff join unions. Lets see if they believe what they are saying today – if not why not.

    Oh and caltex will do deductions too apparently

  28. Lorraine 29

    This is not only illegal but totally immoral. What employer wouldn’t know that they can’t dock the wages of an employee for theft by a person that is not the employee. How completely stupid are they. These companies need to be prosecuted. How dear they do this. I hope they legally hang draw and quarter these businesses. Also expecting employees to run after drive-offs and put their own lives in danger. Also completely stupid. They must have the rego numbers of the cars and pics of the criminals. It like in the 19th century but I suppose that is what it is becoming like for low wage earners in NZ today thanks to #Team Key.

    • Draco T Bastard 29.1

      Oh, I figure that they knew it was illegal but also knew that the employees a) wouldn’t kick up a stink because they were desperate for a job and b) couldn’t afford a lawyer to take them to court. This is one of the reasons why the government changed from a full employment policy to a 6% unemployment policy back in 1984. It shifts power from the workers to the employers and they get to do shit like this and not be held accountable for it as well as keeping wages down so that all the gains of increased productivity go to the shareholders and managers instead of the people creating the wealth.

      It’s not just this government that’s been ripping us off but Labour as well.

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    8 hours ago
  • Health Minister Andrew Little responding to the New Zealand Nurses Organisation's rejection of ...
    I was advised last night that the result of the ballot of Tōpūtanga Tapuhi Kaitiaki o Aotearoa New Zealand Nurses Organisation members have rejected the latest proposal to settle their collective agreement. Let me be clear: the proposal was one they put to the Government. The Nurses Organisation rejected their ...
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    9 hours ago
  • Conversion Practices Prohibition Legislation introduced to Parliament
    Legislation has been introduced to Parliament to protect against practices intended to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. Introducing the Conversion Practices Prohibition Legislation Bill, Minister of Justice, Kris Faafoi, said the measures proposed were aimed at ending conversion practices which don’t work, are widely ...
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    9 hours ago
  • New school site for booming West Auckland
    The Government will build on a new school site in West Auckland to cope with rapid population growth in the area, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. The Ministry is working with existing local schools to determine how the 1.5-hectare site at 279 Hobsonville Point Road will be used to support ...
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    13 hours ago
  • Trans-Tasman travel window to close at midnight tomorrow
    A further 500 MIQ rooms released for managed returnees from NSW Further Government actions announced today are balanced to provide more certainty for Kiwis wanting to return from Australia, while continuing to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Ayesha Verrall says. The actions were foreshadowed last ...
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    1 day ago
  • Govt investing millions in Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti schools
    Napier Boys’ and Girls’ High Schools are among those set to benefit from a $16.5 million investment in the Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti region, Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash announced today. The Government has set aside money in Budget 2021 to accelerate five projects in Napier, Hastings, Havelock North ...
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    1 day ago
  • Game changing Jobs for Nature investment for Northland
    Conservation Minister Kiri Allan has announced Jobs for Nature funding for a portfolio of projects that will create ‘game changing’ gains for nature and communities across Northland/Te Tai Tokerau as part of the Government’s acceleration of the economic recovery from COVID. “This portfolio of 12 projects will see over $20 ...
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    1 day ago
  • Third COVID-19 vaccine receives provisional approval
    New Zealand’s regulatory authority Medsafe has granted provisional approval of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for individuals 18 years of age and older, Acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. New Zealand secured 7.6 million doses (enough for 3.8 million people) of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine through an ...
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    1 day ago
  • Bowel-cancer screening programme is saving lives
    More than 1000 New Zealanders have had bowel cancer – New Zealand’s second-most-common cause of death from cancer - detected under the Government’s National Bowel Screening Programme, Health Minister Andrew Little said today. More than 1200 New Zealanders died from bowel cancer in 2017. The screening programme aims to save ...
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    1 day ago
  • Govt welcomes draft report on the retail grocery sector
    The Commerce Commission’s draft report into the retail grocery sector is being welcomed by Government as a major milestone. “I asked the Commerce Commission to look at whether this sector is as competitive as it could be and today it has released its draft report for consultation,” Commerce and Consumer ...
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    1 day ago
  • Christchurch’s Youth Hub ‘set to go’ thanks to further Government funding
    Construction of New Zealand’s first, purpose-built centre for youth well-being is ready to get underway thanks to an extra $2.5 million of COVID-19 response funding, Housing Minister and Associate Minister of Finance, Megan Woods announced today.  “The Christchurch Youth Hub is about bringing together all the things young people need ...
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    1 day ago
  • Next step to protect Milford Sound Piopiotahi
    Expert group lays out plan to better protect iconic UNESCO World Heritage site Milford Sound Piopiotahi and its surrounds Funding confirmed for dedicated unit and Establishment Board to assess the recommendations and provide oversight of the process from here Milford Opportunities Project a test case for transformational change in tourism ...
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    2 days ago
  • Funding for projects to reduce waste from construction and demolition
    The Government has announced funding for projects in Auckland and the lower North Island to help reduce construction and demolition waste. “Construction is the main source of waste sent to landfill, and much of this could be reduced, reused and recovered,” Environment Minister David Parker said. “The Government is funding ...
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    2 days ago
  • Speech at the launch of the National Hepatitis C Action Plan
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Thank you Anglesea Pharmacy and Te Manawa Taki for hosting this event. As a doctor, I saw first hand the impact of hepatitis C. I met Moana in 2019; she came to the infectious diseases outpatient clinic at Wellington Hospital having tested positive for hepatitis C. Like ...
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    2 days ago
  • Plan to eliminate hepatitis C as a major health threat by 2030
    A plan to eliminate hepatitis C in New Zealand, reducing liver cancer and the need for liver transplants, has been released today by Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall. “Around 45,000 New Zealanders have hepatitis C, but only around half know they have it,” said Ayesha Verrall. “Symptoms often ...
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    2 days ago
  • School upgrades and new classrooms for West Coast, Tasman and Canterbury
    A funding injection from Budget 2021 to complete four shovel ready projects and new classrooms at six schools and kura will provide a real boost to local communities, Minister Dr Megan Woods announced today. “This Government has committed to providing quality fit for purpose learning environments and 100,000 new student ...
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    2 days ago
  • Warmer Kiwi Homes smashes annual target
    The Government's highly successful insulation and heating programme, Warmer Kiwi Homes, is celebrating a key milestone with the completion of more than 38,000 insulation and efficient heater installs in the year to the end of June, smashing its target of 25,000 installs for the year. “The Warmer Kiwi Homes scheme ...
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    3 days ago
  • Exemption granted for Wallabies to enter NZ
    Bledisloe Cup rugby will be played in New Zealand after the Australian rugby team received an economic exemption to enter New Zealand. Travel between Australia and New Zealand was suspended on Friday for at least eight weeks following the worsening of the COVID outbreak across the Tasman. New Zealanders have ...
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    3 days ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced three New Zealand Head of Mission appointments. They are: Mike Walsh as Ambassador to Iran Michael Upton as Ambassador to Ethiopia and the African Union Kevin Burnett as Ambassador to Indonesia Iran “Aotearoa New Zealand has a long-standing and constructive relationship with Iran, despite a ...
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    3 days ago
  • Enhanced Task Force Green Approved for West Coast and Marlborough
    The Government has activated Enhanced Task Force Green (ETFG) in response to the West Coast and Marlborough floods, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “To assist with the clean-up, up to $500,000 will be made available to support the recovery in Buller and Marlborough which has experienced ...
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    3 days ago
  • Govt support for upgrade of Eden Park players facilities
    Minister for Sport and Recreation Hon Grant Robertson has announced funding to upgrade the players facilities at Eden Park ahead of upcoming Women’s World Cup events. Eden Park is a confirmed venue for the Rugby World Cup 2021, the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022, and a proposed venue for matches of ...
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    3 days ago
  • More jobs and quicker public transport motoring towards West Auckland
    Work to improve public transport for West Aucklanders and support the region’s economic recovery by creating hundreds of jobs has officially kicked off, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff this morning marked the start of construction on the Northwestern Bus Improvements project. It ...
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    3 days ago
  • Government backs critical health research
    Research into some of New Zealanders’ biggest health concerns including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease is getting crucial support in the latest round of health research funding, Health Minister Andrew Little announced today. The funding, awarded through the Health Research Council of New Zealand, covers 31 General Project grants ($36.64 ...
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    3 days ago
  • New Bay of Islands hospital facilities to bring services closer to home
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Andrew Little have joined a ceremony to bless the site and workers for Phase Two of the redevelopment of the Bay of Islands Hospital in Kawakawa today. The new building will house outpatients and primary care facilities, as well as expanded renal care ...
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    4 days ago
  • Raukokore re-imagined with ‘smart’ relocatable rent to own housing
    Iwi, Crown Partnership Relocatable, fully insulated housing, connected to a new solar plant Provides a pathway to home ownership New housing in the remote eastern Bay of Plenty community of Raukokore shows how iwi and Crown agencies can work together effectively to provide warm, dry, energy efficient homes in a ...
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    4 days ago
  • Cabinet accepts Turkish authorities’ request for the managed return of three NZ citizens
    Cabinet has agreed to the managed return of a New Zealand citizen and her two young children from Turkey, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The three have been in immigration detention in Turkey since crossing the border from Syria earlier this year. Turkey has requested that New Zealand repatriate ...
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    4 days ago
  • Govt delivers more classrooms so children can focus on learning
    Extra Government investment in classrooms and school building projects will enable students and teachers to focus on education rather than overcrowding as school rolls grow across the country, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis say. The pair visited Ruakākā School in Whangārei today to announce $100 ...
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    4 days ago
  • New station a platform for AirportLink to take off
    Every Aucklander with access to the rail network will now have a quick and convenient trip to the airport, Transport Minister Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said during the official opening of the new Puhinui Interchange today. The new interchange links the rail platform with a new bus ...
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    6 days ago
  • 10 days sick leave for employees delivered
    Legislation doubling employees’ minimum sick leave entitlement to 10 days comes into effect today, bringing benefits to both businesses and employees, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Wood announced today. “Our Government is delivering on a key manifesto commitment to help Kiwis and workplaces stay healthy,” Michael Wood said. “COVID-19 ...
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    7 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on Election Win
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern tonight congratulated Prime Minister-elect Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on her victory in the Samoa’s general election. “New Zealand has a special relationship with Samoa, anchored in the Treaty of Friendship. We look forward to working with Samoa’s new government in the spirit of partnership that characterises this ...
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    7 days ago
  • Quarantine Free Travel with Australia suspended
    Quarantine Free Travel from all Australian states and territories to New Zealand is being suspended as the Covid situation there worsens, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. From 11.59pm today Australians will no longer be able to enter New Zealand quarantine-free. This will be ...
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    1 week ago
  • Growing conservation efforts in Gisborne
    A big injection of Jobs for Nature funding will create much-needed jobs and financial security for families in TeTairāwhiti, and has exciting prospects for conservation in the region, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. “The projects target local communities most affected by the economic consequences of COVID 19 and are designed ...
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    1 week ago
  • Flood recovery given further assistance
    The Government is contributing a further $1 million to help the flood battered Buller community, Acting Emergency Management Minister Kris Faafoi announced today. “Buller is a small community which has found itself suddenly facing significant and ongoing welfare costs. While many emergency welfare costs are reimbursed by Government, this money ...
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    1 week ago
  • Funding for five projects to reduce food waste
    The Government is funding five projects to help address the growing problem of food waste, Environment Minister David Parker announced today. “New Zealand households throw away nearly 300,000 tonnes of food every year, half of which could still be eaten. By supporting these initiatives, we’re taking steps to reduce this ...
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    1 week ago
  • Temporary Accommodation Service activated for West Coast flooding event
    The Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS) has been activated today - meaning residents on the West Coast of the South Island and in the Marlborough region hit by flooding over the weekend can now access help finding temporary accommodation, announced Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Poto Williams in Westport today. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Pause to Quarantine Free Travel from South Australia to New Zealand
    Quarantine Free Travel from South Australia to New Zealand will be paused from 11.59am (NZT) tonight, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. However, people currently in the state who ordinarily live in New Zealand will be able to return on “managed return” flights starting with the next available flight, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand condemns malicious cyber activity by Chinese state-sponsored actors
    New Zealand has established links between Chinese state-sponsored actors known as Advanced Persistent Threat 40 (APT40) and malicious cyber activity in New Zealand. “The GCSB has worked through a robust technical attribution process in relation to this activity. New Zealand is today joining other countries in strongly condemning this malicious ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Remarks to Diplomatic Corps
    It is a pleasure to be with you all this evening. Some of you may have been surprised when you received an invitation from the Minister of Disarmament and Arms Control, and I would forgive you if you were. New Zealand is unique in having established a Ministerial portfolio ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Early Pfizer shipment boosts vaccine schedule
    The largest shipment of the Pfizer vaccine to date has arrived into New Zealand two days ahead of schedule, and doses are already being delivered to vaccination centres around the country, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says. “The shipment of more than 370,000 doses reached New Zealand yesterday, following a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago