web analytics

The Fire at Will campaign

Written By: - Date published: 3:48 pm, March 2nd, 2009 - 37 comments
Categories: workers' rights - Tags: , ,

It’s good to see the Council of Trade Unions offering solidarity to non-union workers who are subject to National’s fire at will law by providing free legal and industrial support.

As Helen Kelly said on the news last night, when the Government fails in its basic duty to protect workers from arbitrary employer power then it’s up to unions to step in and take responsibility themselves.

Part of that will involve organising protests and pickets to support workers who are exploited by this law, as well as leafleting and getting the word out through our communities. That’s going to require some people.

If you’re interested in helping out with the campaign make sure you register your details with the CTU and join up with the Facebook group.

The law may well have passed, but until it’s repealed we can help limit the damage and send a strong message to employers that any abuse will come with serious consequences.

37 comments on “The Fire at Will campaign ”

  1. gingercrush 1

    How are pickets and protests meant to change public perception. I sometimes think if anything they hurt things. The most important thing CTU could do is have a PR/Media strategy that involves getting those who were unjustly fired into the public arena. Because the one thing that allowed opposition in Australia to grow over the work reforms Howard pushed in. Was that eventually those who were unfairly fired, were then pushed onto programs such as “A Current Affair” and Today, Tonight”. That gave the issue a real push into everyday people’s mind and enabled real and meaningful opposition to those work reforms. Really the best thing, the left and those who oppose this bill.

    I hate to say it, but to win public support on this issue, you need sob stories. Those stories that end up on “Close Up” or “Campbell Live”. Otherwise, its just not going to garner anymore support than it is now.

  2. As long as the protests and pickets are within the law I have no problem.

  3. Tane 3

    GC, I can assure you the CTU has a more nuanced approach than simply picketing bad employers. For this post I’ve only included the elements of their campaign that the public can help out with.

    Brett, thanks for that, I’ll pass it on to Helen Kelly.

  4. BLiP 4

    I’m not sure that Facebook is really the way to go – employers are such a bunch of nasty bastards they are quite likely to log the names of all those on Facebook and black list them.

    Is there provision for anonymous registration until the need to go public in person is required?

    • Dean 4.1

      “I’m not sure that Facebook is really the way to go – employers are such a bunch of nasty bastards they are quite likely to log the names of all those on Facebook and black list them.”

      This explains your outlook on employer and employee relationships. Well done BLiP.

      • BLiP 4.1.1

        Huh? It is simply a warning. Most employment agencies already check Facebook when reference checking candidates for new positions. Don’t know how they do things in Toyland or where ever it is that you live.

  5. sweetd 5

    Will this work the same way with employees. Will they be named and shamed; to appear on Campbell Live and explain why they are a shitty employee?

    • Matthew Pilott 5.1

      I don’t know, perhaps you should ask the EMA that…
      I think you’re barking up the wrong tree asking here.

  6. Thanks Tane.

    I wounder if the CTU would love a counter protest?

    Oh that’s right, free speech only applies to them.

    Seriously I would hate to see an innocent business owner intimidated by these guys.

    • Felix 6.1

      But why would anyone target an innocent business owner? There is no point.

      Surely if you’re a good employer you have nothing to worry about. Are you getting it yet?

  7. ieuan 7

    So in amongst the on-going rounds of redundancies that are happening due to the recession starting to bite the union movement is going to protest that person xyz was somehow unjustly dismissed due to the 90 day law.

    Well good luck in getting anyone to notice.

  8. Felix:

    I’m saying some jackass could not do his job, turn up late for work, etc etc, he/she could get fired, then could contact the union give a sob story, and the union will be their marching and chanting their little chants, of course this worker doesnt know that thew union doesn’t actually give a fuck about him.her just their movement and their political leanings.

    I hope the union have some actually stats and hard data on why a person got fired.

  9. TightyRighty 9

    jeez, the rhetoric is strong here, but ultimately self deluding. If the union is going to get involved on behalf of workers who are “exploited” because of this great new piece of legislation, hadn’t they better realise this: that any worker who is repeatedly hired then fired within 89 days is probably just plain rubbish at any job given to them. be it attitude, skills or whatever.

    Now i know you are going to come back and say that you the union will only picket the sites where bosses do the hiring and firing repeatedly. the problem with the unions is though, they are not famous for being incisive in their observations of workplaces.

    [Tane: I don’t think you understand. The idea is that unions will get in behind any worker who is unfairly dismissed under one of National’s 90 day ‘probation’ periods. They need not be hired and fired multiple times to gain this backing.]

    • higherstandard 9.1

      Tane how will you know they have been unfairly dismissed ?

      • Matt 9.1.1

        Does it matter? If the business has done nothing wrong why would they worry?

        • higherstandard 9.1.1.1

          “Does it matter?”

          Yes – why would you want to make a fool out of yourself supporting an employee who was fairly dismissed.

          It would be as untenable as supporting an employer who has unfairly dismissed workers.

          • Felix 9.1.1.1.1

            Please correct me if I’ve taken you the wrong way, but it sounds like you’re saying that no-one can reasonably support either party in a sub-90-day dismissal – firer or firee – as there is no appeal process to determine the facts.

            Is that what you’re saying?

          • Matt 9.1.1.1.2

            @HS. Exactly my (and others) point…. If the employer has acted correctly and is happy with their actions then they can sit back and let the pickters/protesters make fools of themselves.
            Is this not the exact same thing as saying that if an employee is a good employee and does their job etc.etc. they have nothing to worry about?
            Surely you see the correlation here?

      • burt 9.1.2

        As if that is a consideration. Employer = bad – Employee = good.

    • TightyRighty 9.2

      Right, and as i pointed out Tane, the unions are not famous for the incisivness of their obvservations of employers. which means we are likely to see a lot of picketing going on outside the places of business of employers who have sacked rubbish staff. if the unions do only apply the standover tactics to exploitive employers then they have a measure of support from me, but i don’t think i’ll seriously have to offer the olive branch to the unions very often.

  10. RedLogix 10

    hs,

    Whoa mate, I think you’ve just missed the point here. Of course it ‘matters’…

    Right now there is a reasonably fair system that BOTH the employer and employee have resort to, in order to determine if a dismissal was warranted or not. There exists an accepted process to discover the truth.

    This law change scraps that and the truth no longer ‘matters’.

  11. higherstandard 11

    “Right now there is a reasonably fair system that BOTH the employer and employee have resort to, in order to determine if a dismissal was warranted or not. There exists an accepted process to discover the truth.

    This law change scraps that and the truth no longer ‘matters’.”

    Ummmmmm nope that process still exists for all staff employed longer than 3 months.

    • Felix 11.1

      And it no longer exists for staff employed for less than three months.

      That is the issue being discussed. DUH.

      • higherstandard 11.1.1

        Duh unless they belong to a company with more than a certain number of staff

        • Felix 11.1.1.1

          Well you’re clearly just looking for excuses to not discuss the topic now so I shan’t waste my time.

          I might as well be talking to Brett.

          Actually Brett’s more fun because unlike you, he pretends to be less clever than he really is.

        • Matt 11.1.1.2

          Is it just me or for everyone that that response from HS conjures up the image of a child with his fingers in his ears going ‘ LA LA LA LA’ at the top of their voice?

  12. burt 12

    In the case of the EPMU looking after the workers rights of a dismissed individual how we will know how much of the noise they are making is acting in the capacity of a union doing their job and how much is acting in the capacity of the Labour party making some noise for political point scoring?

    • Daveo 12.1

      Because the EPMU is a democratic institution with a responsibility for its members burt. It doesn’t exist to score points for Labour, and nor does it need to.

      • Chess Player 12.1.1

        Are you seriously suggesting that the EPMU and Labour Party are not in bed together?

        How else was Andrew Little spawned?

        • lprent 12.1.1.1

          Do you seriously mean to tell me that all wingnuts are not the same? That they don’t all look like you, and you have the same intellectual capacity of a whaleoil? That they don’t all appear from a drunken haze like Clint Heine and friends appear to do? Or the incoherent rantings that FFM and D4J think are worth preserving for prosperity. It is the same question as the one you’re asking. To me they all look the same..

          There are major differences in both objectives and methods between the NZLP and the unions. I have to listen to them frequently from the NZLP side.

          At least I discriminate between wingnut trolls and mere wingnuts… I look at their behavior rather than with my prejudices. I realize that this will be a hard and radically new thought for you – but perhaps you should try using your brain once in a while

    • Akldnut 12.2

      Burt after all my dealings with unions. With any grievance the employer is given the opportunity to sit down and address any problem before any action is taken. In the event of the union member being at fault he is told by the union to wake up and get his/her shit together. They don’t act unless there is good reason. Nothing political in that.

  13. mike 13

    Good stuff Helen – just had to sign 2 individual contracts this afternoon for people leaving the union. As they say why pay for something others are getting for free. Why would I argue with that..

    • Daveo 13.1

      I doubt it. The CTU isn’t offering free union memberships it’s offering free protection against the 90 day law. Post up the links to the resignation forms and I might believe you.

    • lprent 13.2

      Mike all I can say to your claim is Bullshit

  14. Matt Holland 14

    Interesting thought. This bill (if used as is being described by it’s supporters, to give workers that may not otherwise get one a chance) along with measures discussed at the job summit such as 9 working day fortnight and bulk low paid jobs cutting out cycle ways, is likely to have a downward effect on the average wage.

    How is it going to look for Key, reported as saying ‘we’d love to see wages drop’, when wages actually do just that.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • COVID-19 vaccine slated for possible approval next week
    The green light for New Zealand’s first COVID-19 vaccine could be granted in just over a week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said today. “We’re making swift progress towards vaccinating New Zealanders against the virus, but we’re also absolutely committed to ensuring the vaccines are safe and effective,” Jacinda Ardern said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • New ACC Board members announced.
    The Minister for ACC is pleased to announce the appointment of three new members to join the Board of ACC on 1 February 2021. “All three bring diverse skills and experience to provide strong governance oversight to lead the direction of ACC” said Hon Carmel Sepuloni. Bella Takiari-Brame from Hamilton ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Economic boost for Southland marae
    The Government is investing $9 million to upgrade a significant community facility in Invercargill, creating economic stimulus and jobs, Infrastructure Minister Grant Robertson and Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene have announced.  The grant for Waihōpai Rūnaka Inc to make improvements to Murihiku Marae comes from the $3 billion set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Celebrating the Entry Into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    [Opening comments, welcome and thank you to Auckland University etc] It is a great pleasure to be here this afternoon to celebrate such an historic occasion - the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This is a moment many feared would never come, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Supporting disabled people to stay connected
    The Government is providing $3 million in one-off seed funding to help disabled people around New Zealand stay connected and access support in their communities, Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The funding will allow disability service providers to develop digital and community-based solutions over the next two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Voluntary saliva testing offered to quarantine workers from Monday
    Border workers in quarantine facilities will be offered voluntary daily COVID-19 saliva tests in addition to their regular weekly testing, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. This additional option will be rolled out at the Jet Park Quarantine facility in Auckland starting on Monday 25 January, and then to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Next steps in firearms buy-back
    The next steps in the Government’s ambitious firearms reform programme to include a three-month buy-back have been announced by Police Minister Poto Williams today.  “The last buy-back and amnesty was unprecedented for New Zealand and was successful in collecting 60,297 firearms, modifying a further 5,630 firearms, and collecting 299,837 prohibited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature projects target iconic ecosystems
    Upscaling work already underway to restore two iconic ecosystems will deliver jobs and a lasting legacy, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says.  “The Jobs for Nature programme provides $1.25 billion over four years to offer employment opportunities for people whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 recession. “Two new projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago