Right to strike

Written By: - Date published: 3:43 pm, August 29th, 2008 - 9 comments
Categories: labour, workers' rights - Tags:

Hundreds of Australian journalists walked off the job yesterday in protest at Fairfax’s 550 planned job cuts.

Here in NZ journos employed by Fairfax and facing 160 job losses joined their Aussie counterparts in a wild cat strike.

Nah. They didn’t.

However, they did issue a press release via their union the EPMU. That must of got the bosses worried.

But it’s not their fault, it’s Labour’s.  Despite the Employment Relations Act being a huge step up from National’s Employment Contracts Act, Labour’s law still fails to provide the right to strike over redundancies and outsourcing.

So the question is whether Labour will pick up its game and include the right to strike in its election manifesto or will National?  Well, they’re always banging on about raising New Zealanders up to Australian standards…..

9 comments on “Right to strike”

  1. We can strike any time we like….We just have to be ready to face the consequences.

    Few of us are.

    Wimps, really.

  2. “However, they did issue a press release via their union the EPMU. That must of got the bosses worried.

    But it’s not their fault, it’s Labour’s.”

    No, it is the fault of the EPMU. The EPMU has consistently refused to advocate for the right to strike. It refused in the 1980s, it refused in 1991 (not for nothing is the EPMU known as the union that stopped the general strike), and it refuses now.

    Go read their Work Rights Checklist, and tell me under which of the 6 points the right to strike is mentioned. The right to organise, the right to bargain. But the word strike isn’t even mentioned once in the entire document.

    It’s all very well to talk about Labour needing to support the right to strike, but if the largest union affiliated to them isn’t even mentioning it, let alone demanding it, what incentive do Labour have? None.

  3. monkey-boy 3

    “But it’s not their fault, it’s Labour’s. Despite the Employment Relations Act being a huge step up from National’s Employment Contracts Act, Labour’s law still fails to provide the right to strike over redundancies and outsourcing.”

    Careful Eddie you don’t want to be saying stuff like that on the ‘voice of the labour movement’.
    Can you prove this outrageous assertion? Surely people can strike when they like in a democracy?

  4. Daveo 4

    “The EPMU has consistently refused to advocate for the right to strike. It refused in the 1980s, it refused in 1991 (not for nothing is the EPMU known as the union that stopped the general strike), and it refuses now.”

    George I see you’re still bitter about the Rex Jones days (the EPMU didn’t exist then by the way) and you still haven’t got your facts right.

    Last year the EPMU went before the IR & Transport select committee and called for a right to strike outside the term of a collective agreement in instances of outsourcing and restructuring. The union is continuing to pressure Labour on this front.

    It’s hard to take you seriously George when your statements are so often incorrect and based on your own personal bitterness.

  5. Daveo 5

    “Can you prove this outrageous assertion? Surely people can strike when they like in a democracy?”

    They can also be fired and their union bankrupted in court if they take illegal strike action.

  6. No, it is the fault of the EPMU. The EPMU has consistently refused to advocate for the right to strike.

    You retard – the EPMU forced a select committee inquiry into the right to strike last year.

  7. Daveo 7

    “We can strike any time we like .We just have to be ready to face the consequences.

    Few of us are.

    Wimps, really.”

    Try telling that to a worker with rent to pay and a family to feed. Things aren’t that simple in the real world.

  8. Good post,
    Under the ERA workers can’t strike for many reasons at all, no solidarity strikes, no strikes for political issues.
    I doubt Labour will change their stance though, if I recall correctly Labour actually introduced the strike restrictions when they re-worked the Employment Contracts Act in to the Employment Relations Act.

    Captcha: Feminine know

  9. Yes they have the right to strike, too bad the left doesn’t believe they have the right to work if they want to, without being called a scab by some Union official who doesn’t even work there.

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