web analytics

The Green Party’s proposal on essential workers’ pay

Written By: - Date published: 12:19 pm, May 6th, 2020 - 45 comments
Categories: covid-19, greens, Living Wage, Unions, wages, workers' rights - Tags:

Green Party press release, via Scoop

______________________________________________________________________________

Time to pay essential heroes a decent wage, says Green Party

Wednesday, 6 May 2020, 10:19 am Press Release: Green Party 4-5 minutes


The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed just how much we rely on our essential workers. The Green Party are proposing a package that ensures they are paid a dignified wage so they do not live in poverty.

Green Party Co-leader Marama Davidson said today:

“Throughout the COVID crisis, we have all relied on the essential workers on the frontline.

“The people who stack shelves, care for our most vulnerable in rest homes, and transport goods around the country, risking their own health in doing so.

“The Green Party believes these heroes deserve to earn enough to live on and is proposing a series of changes to bring essential workers’ pay up to a dignified wage.

“Low-wage essential workers are getting New Zealand through this crisis and continue to do so. They went to work when the rest of us were told to stay away – and people would be horrified to hear many of them barely earn enough to live on.

“People like those working in supermarkets, rest homes, and driving public transport have made their worth clear. They deserve a wage where they can live with dignity. That’s why the Green Party is proposing changesto ensure these heroes are paid fairly.”

Green Party Workplace Relations spokesperson Jan Logie said today:

“Firstly, the Government must bring in legislation to enable Fair Pay Agreements, for people doing essential work like retail, cleaning, security and transport in the private sector. These agreements set minimum employment standards, which are agreed through bargaining between employers and unions.

“Those agreements then become legally-required minimum standards for people working throughout the whole sector.

“The Government should ensure all people working in the broader public sector are paid a decent wage, including contractors, people working for crown entities, and people working for Government-funded community organisations.

Core public service employees have earned a living wage since 2018. However, this does not extend to people employed by crown entities or people whose work is contracted or otherwise funded by the Government, but who are employed by private companies or community organisations.

“We also want a hospitality sector working group established immediately. This would bring employers, unions and Government around the planning table to get the industry on a more sustainable footing going forward,” said Jan Logie.

“The Government has the legislative tools to bring all essential workers up to the living wage. These unsung heroes have made their worth abundantly clear. It’s time to pay them fairly.”

How would it work?

The Green Party is proposing three steps to bring all essential workers’ pay up to a wage that reflects the work they do.

1) Firstly, the Government needs to introduce legislation to enable Fair Pay Agreements as soon as possible. These Agreements will be a set of sector-specific minimum employment standards covering wages and working conditions. Essentially, it sets a fair framework for negotiations between employers and unions, which once agreed upon, become legal requirements for all people working in that sector.

More information on Fair Pay Agreements: https://www.mbie.govt.nz/business-and-employment/employment-and-skills/employment-legislation-reviews/fair-pay-agreements/

2) For those working in the public sector, we should make provision to increase pay for the lowest paid public sector workers, including those with jobs funded by the public sector, to ensure everyone is on a living wage.

3) We should set up a hospitality sector working group. This would bring employers, unions and Government around the planning table to get the industry on a more sustainable footing going forward.


45 comments on “The Green Party’s proposal on essential workers’ pay”

  1. Ad 1

    It's 10 days out from Budget 2020 and the Greens come out with a big uncosted idea?

    Pretty apparent that they lost the budget bid for it, so they resort to electioneering despite being around the Cabinet that votes on the 2020 Budget. 

    • weka 1.1

      Half the left are telling them they need to step up more, the other half are slamming them when they do. I reckon they should just do what they want at this stage. Nothing wrong with putting good ideas out there, and we are in an election year. And it's their job to speak up for workers at this time.

      What does 'being around the Cabinet' mean?

      • Ad 1.1.1

        OMG 'being around Cabinet' means they are in government. 

        And don't give me that "free to do what they want" horseshit. They are bound by collective responsibility to being in government. 

        It goes like this: you put up good ideas in the budget process; some win and some don't, and you accept both as part of Cabinet responsibility. Then the budget is published by the Minister of Finance – that's his role. It's occurred like this for over a century.

        "speaking up for workers" when you don't have the Ministerial portfolio is like Shane Jones issuing a press release about forming a National Park, or Damien O'Connor issuing a release with a big uncosted idea 10 days from budget about the carbon trading regime.

        • weka 1.1.1.1

          Lol, given you are ok with the Greens being out of parliament, I can see why this view appeals to you. Sorry that the Greens don't play the game in a way that you approve of, but some of us vote for them precisely because of this.

          They're not inside government in the usual way. It's been a while since I looked at their agreement with Labour, but my understanding is that they have the freedom for non-Ministers to speak outside of collective responsibility (within reason) and in areas that they don't hold portfolios for. This was the trade off for not having cabinet posts. Hence, it's the non-Ministers Davidson and Logie doing this press release. This was discussed a lot when the government was formed, the value in having a co-leader who was not a Minister.

          Further, obviously, but I'll spell it out because why not match the patronising tone, the Greens need to be able to differentiate themselves from Labour in order to stay in parliament. This is easy for them to do on policy, because they are to the left of Labour and it shows, so it's a necessity for them to make this visible in election year. Also, Labour are going to have to make another choice this year, about how much they want to work with the Greens, or not. They can throw their lot in with NZF if that's what they want, but this would be a foolish medium and long term strategy.

          That you think the GP should play the old boys game when patently that will give more power to L/NZF and lessen any power that the Greens have is about your values Ad, not about whether the Greens are doing something wrong. Myself, I thought the press release looked rushed, but it's pretty obvious that with so few MPs doing so much work this year that this is going to be an issue at times.

          Meanwhile, a left wing party just promoted fair wages, and a leftie here is telling them to stfu. SSDD I guess.
           

        • Incognito 1.1.1.2

          The Green Party is not part of the Labour-NZF coalition Government; they have a Supply and Confidence Agreement with Labour.

          Their three ministers are not even Ministers outside Cabinet but are Support Party Ministers.

          https://dpmc.govt.nz/our-business-units/cabinet-office/ministers-and-their-portfolios/ministerial-list

          The Greens had already started their election campaign, which will be of vital importance in this Election.

  2. Gosman 2

    Once unemployment hits 20 % rather than 15 % I am not sure the extra 5% unemployed will be grateful for the increase in pay their former work colleagues will be getting

    • weka 2.1

      Sounds like your personal values leaking out there Gosman. I'm on a benefit and I support wage increases.

      See my note under your other comment now in OM.

    • left_forward 2.2

      Proving yet again that gratitude is not an area of expertise for you Gos.
      In fact, the qualities that most humans value so much in others, such as gratitude, caring, compassion, love, etc, seem to be entirely missing from everything you say.

    • KJT 2.3

      20% unemployment is not a given.

      But it may be, if National keep talking confidence down, in their desperate attempts to pretend they can run an economy better than, more "leftish" Governments. 

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    Obviously such workers deserve fair pay.  Nothing wrong with advocating the principle.  I see nothing specifying what it ought to be.  Did the press release deliberately evade that?

    Brave for the Greens to campaign on behalf of a bunch of people who never vote Green?  No, foolish, is the response I'm hearing from all directions.  Hang on, could be they will make history by transforming all those lower-class non-voters into Green voters. If that happens in the election, we will be obliged to look back and admit it really was an act of magic.

    • weka 3.1

      I see it more as them building on what Turei started. Plus it's consistent with green politics.

      If we're looking at this year's election, then it also matches what Davidson is doing in her area, which includes many low waged workers.

      I would have thought the whole living wage thing fitted the values of urban liberals.

      Whoever gets the non-voters at some point, the Greens clearly need people to switch back from Labour to the Greens this year.

      • Dennis Frank 3.1.1

        Yeah to all that.  However it's debatable how many really do get converted by flag-waving.  Therefore I predict that the next poll shows no evident bump for the Greens.

        • weka 3.1.1.1

          which bit is the flag waving? Talking about workers' wages?

          • Dennis Frank 3.1.1.1.1

            Yes, it appears to be a play for the votes of that group they mentioned.  If not, maybe it was virtue-signalling?  Sorry, must not be too cynical.  Just hard to see the practical value in the tactic.

            • weka 3.1.1.1.1.1

              The position on wages seems true to their values. Why they're highlighting this at this time, I guess it's because it's part of the ongoing living wage campaign and there have been issues with expecting essential workers to support society but not be properly recompensed for that. Makes sense to have the conversation now. 

              • Dennis Frank

                Conversation with who though??  As Ad implied, could be just a knee-jerk response to not getting consensus on the proposal with the other two parties in govt.  If so, seems pointless.

                I agreed that essential workers ought to have a living wage.  But they don't need Greens to tell them so, do they?  Can figure that out themselves without help.  Are Jan & Marama peeved that cold, callous Jacinda & Grant wouldn't agree?  Or did Winston torpedo the scheme?  Why not tell all?

                • weka

                  conversation with the citizens of NZ. Isn't that the point of releasing policy like this?

                  The point isn't to tell essential workers what they need. It's to get policy traction so that decent wages become more possible. This is what political parties do.

                  All that personal stuff, whether true or not, is irrelevant to me. We have no way of knowing. I prefer to focus on the politics.

                  As for the GP not getting what they want and adapting, this is core kaupapa for them. How to both maintain working relationships with Labour and NZF and forging their own path. They're good at this and it's going to be very interesting to see what happens this year given the nature of small parties and what happens to them once in govt.

            • In Vino 3.1.1.1.1.2

              Perhaps we are in one huge mess because far too many people prize their sense of what is practical to the point where they lose focus on what is valuable?

              • Dennis Frank

                I'd agree with that.  I did acknowledge the merit of the principle up-thread.  However, as one who has participated in political party practices in the past (Greens) I tend to see election year as a time for tactics/strategy/positioning, and so was being a little critical from that perspective…

    • KJT 3.2

      I see it as sticking to a consistent set of principles.

  4. gsays 4

    Excellent news.

    Another way to do this is award rates.

    Used to be a thing before Douglas and co went fully Miley and put their wrecking ball through workers in this country.

    Edit. After all, it is only correcting a failure n the ‘market’, where participants aren’t paid enough to fully partake in society.

  5. Craig H 5

    It's restating Labour policy to remind them of it. I agree with all of it.

  6. Dean Reynolds 6

    It's great to see the Greens moving away from identity politics & focusing on real world issues which will boost their party vote in Setember.

  7. adam 7

    The greens purpose a shift to the left, and labour attacks from the right.

    What wonderful days we live in. 

  8. bwaghorn 8

    No mention of freezing workers truck drivers and dare I say it., farm workers.!

    We all kept going .

    • arkie 8.1

      How many freezing workers, truck drivers and farm workers are on minimum wage?

      • Timeforacupoftea 8.1.1

        Unfortunately during the Douglas / Prebble reign freezing workers wages were slashed. 

        Farm labourers were never paid bugger all lucky if they received minimum wage may have got a old dunger of a house or hut to live in and knock off when the boss stopped for the night without overtime. 

        I hear many truck drivers say they work for minimum wages – a few call into night time radio saying just that.

        Do we ever hear people talking about time and a half and double time pay these days ?

        • arkie 8.1.1.1

          Time and a half and double time still exists, but in my experience only in industries and work places with significant union membership.

        • bwaghorn 8.1.1.2

          4 or 5 years ago a law came in forcing farmers to keep workers hours so they couldnt be paid below minimum wage ,which was a small help . But yip most houses are cold shitty dumps.  

    • solkta 8.2

      truck drivers

      The people who stack shelves, care for our most vulnerable in rest homes, and transport goods around the country,

  9. Wayne 9

    In the current circumstances, is anyone going to get any sort of wage increase? I think that is highly unlikely.

    As I have previously said, the challenge will be maintain existing jobs at current wage rates.

    It is almost certain, given that so many will have less money over the next year or so, that prices for all sorts of goods and services will fall. That inevitably affects the incomes of those producing those goods and services.

    For instance, no-one in the state sector, including nurses and teachers, and no matter where they are within it, will get any type of pay increase in the next two years. That was the case in the GFC, and it will be the case now. There will be hundreds of thousands of people who will envy the level of job security that most people in the state sector have.

    I get the impression that Grant Robertson will be quite hard headed about all this. He knows any wage increases in the state sector will automatically increase govt debt. He will already be getting quite worried about how high it is going to get.

    • millsy 9.1

      But that is what you and your mates want.

      A very low wage economy. No pay rises for anyone while rents, power, food and every other price keeps going up.

      People stuck on the same wage for 30 years, like Kristine Bartlett.

      • Pat 9.1.1

        "The result was that a National Expenditure Commission took a razor to government spending. Pensions were cut 30 percent and hospitals had to cut back on the food they provided patients.48 Public service salaries were slashed by between 5 and 12 percent.49 Works expenditure, previously used as an economic booster, fell by around 65 percent in nominal terms between 1931 and 1933.50 These cut-backs extended to the private sector; the government enabled the Court of Arbitration to set private-sector wage rates, provoking a 10 percent cut in nominal terms in May 1931.51 At its peak in 1932, deflation reached 12 percent."

        https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/-/media/reservebank/files/publications/bulletins/2009/2009sep72-3wright-hi-res.pdf

         

    • weka 9.2

      They're not talking about teachers and nurses Wayne, they're talking about people on minimum wage who can't afford their living costs. Not sure that goods will drop on cost enough to make up for inflated housing costs.

      If wages rise to livable at least two things happen. One is that people have more cash to spend into the productive economy (assuming housing is controlled, which remains to be seen). Two, the cost to the state of providing ambulances at the bottom of the cliff reduces.

      "In the current circumstances, is anyone going to get any sort of wage increase? I think that is highly unlikely."

      One of the first things the government did was raise benefits. Because they understood that poverty would cause problems for beneficiaries in managing the covid response. Likewise, minimum wage causes ongoing issues that create more costs.

      • Herodotus 9.2.1

        Typical headline hunting – Lets give more but forget about what already is provided.

        They forget of the government assistance that is provided to "make up" for this inadequacy: WFF, accomodation supplement, elimination of school donation for the poor, decile funding, community health card etc all introduced to allow (As we are told by those who implemented these policies) to compensate. 

        He who gives also takes. The more you earn, the less you are supported by the govt.

         

        • weka 9.2.1.1

          Who is 'they' in your second sentence?

          • Wayne 9.2.1.1.1

            I presume the "they" is the Green Party who released the proposal.

            Most of the assistance in Herodotus';s comment is aimed at families with children, which is appropriate. A family on a low wage (or even quite reasonable wages) has always required the support of government to get through. In the 1950's and 60's when I was a child, my mother got the Family Benefit, which was absolutely essential for our household.

            The one type of assistance that is more broadly based is the Accommodation Supplement, which is not family based, but applies to everyone who needs it.

            • weka 9.2.1.1.1.1

              It might have meant the Greens, but that would be odd because they're obviously aware of government assistance. The point being that govt assistance + minimum wage =/= enough to live on for many. Housing cost crisis is a big part of that.

               

    • KJT 9.3

      As fairly recent history has shown, and the experiences of previous recessions, cutting wages at the low end, and cutting  Government spending, during a recession, is the worst way of dealing with it. Keynes has been proven, correct.

      Even Bridges gets that. With wanting to pump more money into businesses. Which may not have the desired effect if it simply goes to shareholders, and banks. Especially if wages are cut.

      Robertson certainly does, with, shovel ready, projects.
      As do the Greens, with their projected, sustainability, projects.

      The ideal time also, with excess capacity to mop up.

      Better for everyone, including viable businesses, if the people who spend most of their income on goods and services, have the money.

      Tourism companies, in New Zealand for one example, are going to depend on how much money Kiwi's have to spend, for, at least, the next five years.

      The recession may not be as deep and prolonged as predicted, if we are clever. And NACT doesn’t remove too much confidence in talking expectations down, to get back into power.

      Resilient and effective business owners will survive.

      The ones that depended on low wages, bs and exploitation may go under. Which is not necessarily a bad thing.

    • Anthony Rimell 9.4

      Wayne:

      "It is almost certain, given that so many will have less money over the next year or so, that prices for all sorts of goods and services will fall. That inevitably affects the incomes of those producing those goods and services."

      All sorts of goods and services, yes: but not meat ad dairy, it seems… Reports of increasing prices – because the US wants our meat – remind us that yet again international capitalism is primarily concerned with profit before people.

      It would be nice if just for once we fed our own people at low prices ahead of feeding the rest of the world.

    • bwaghorn 9.5

      I bet anything you like the chiefs will still be getting their bonus this year.

      • weka 9.5.1

        or they'll take a symbolic, feel good in a pandemic cut and then back to business once people are looking elsewhere.

  10. Wayne 10

    KJT,

    I don't disagree with any of what you have said. No-one is talking about cutting wages and government spending. National didn't during the GFC. Though we didn't keep every single programme of the Clark government, but we did keep all the big ones including WFF.  The deficit (borrowing) got to 8% of GDP in 2010/2011, and remained high for some years. Even by 2017 the debt was higher than we had inherited in 2008, due to both the GFC and the Christchurch earthquake.

    People on this site were complaining that National had increased the debt. As the current govt has found out that is what what happens with massive external shocks. And why it is so essential to have surpluses in the good times, so there is capacity to deal with the next shock.

    In times like this, talk about increasing wages is simply not sensible. The minimum wage is already one of the highest in the world at $18.90 per hour. In the current circumstances for the hospitality industry that is as high as they can afford for workers who are just starting out.

    However, I do think the Andrew Becroft in his article in the Hearld today has some good ideas about supporting children, given that so many families will find that their jobs are gone.

     

    • KJT 10.1

      I've not been one to have a go about borrowing for the GFC. Except as a stick with National supporters, when they talk about Labours, borrowing.

      I do credit National with not going full, austerity, after the GFC, unlike many others. Maybe the lesson was learned after the, Ruth recession.

      Though less would have been needed without the "tax cuts". QE or borrowing is another decision.

      More housing available in the short term, could decrease rents and debt, putting less pressure on wages. Way to much money goes to banks to push existing asset, especially housing, prices up.

      However businesses demanding lower wages always seems to me an, own goal. As I often repeat, wage earners are also customers.

      Certainly, ours depends on locals having discretionary spending. As does hospitality.

      I’ll read the Beecroft article.

  11. Nic the NZer 11

    "And why it is so essential to have surpluses in the good times, so there is capacity to deal with the next shock."

    Bahahahahahahahaha.

    Would your concerns be put at ease if the RBNZ just wrote off all the government bonds it holds after the $30 billion QE program and then implements more QE and writes that off too and so on. This should rapidly result in little to no government debt what so ever.

    Then you should explain why (if govt debt is such a serious concern) the previous National government didn't implement such a policy after the GFC (at this point it should be clear that they could have). In my opinion this demonstrates that actually govt debt is a non-issue and just something that National party politicians like to talk about to discourage spending on social policy and Labour party politicians like to talk about to encourage tax reform discussions. Of course Wayne has himself made a peculiar art-form of talking about Socialism/Capitalism ratios measured as percentage of govt debt to GDP.

Leave a Comment

Use WYSIWYG comments on next comment (inactive new feature)

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • New Zealand First disappointed that Section 70 spouses won’t get relief
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand First is disappointed that the removal of the spousal deductions has had to be delayed by the Ministry fo Social Development, due to COVID19 workload pressures. “New Zealand First has always stood for fairness when it comes to superannuation ...
    2 days ago
  • Winston Peters receives petition demanding more protection for nurses
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First On the steps of Parliament today the Leader of New Zealand First, Rt Hon Winston Peters received a petition from registered nurse Anna Maria Coervers, requesting an amendment to the Protection for First Responders Bill which will ensure the legislation also include registered ...
    2 days ago
  • Week That Was: Getting our economy moving
    It's been a busy seven days as we start to rebuild New Zealand together. From delivering extra support for small businesses, to investing in our artists and arts organisations, to cutting red tape on home DIY projects, we're rolling out our plan to get the economy and New Zealand moving ...
    2 days ago
  • Winston Peters: If protests condoned ‘why are we not at level 1?’
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says alert level 2 restrictions have to be discussed during today's Cabinet meeting. Thousands gathered across the country, including at Parliament, yesterday for Black Lives Matter marches where social distancing and mass gathering rules were flouted. Mr Peters said the breaching of Alert Level 2 rules at ...
    2 days ago
  • Northland rail work to help create regional jobs
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of State Owned Enterprises KiwiRail’s Northland rail upgrade steps up another gear today and will help Northland recover from the impacts of COVID-19, State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters says. The Government is investing $204.5 million through the Provincial Growth Fund to ...
    3 days ago
  • Green Party statement on the death of George Floyd
    “Today and every day we stand in solidarity with George Floyd’s family, friends and community who feel pain and fear about his untimely death at the hands of Minneapolis police”, said Green Party Co-leader and Māori Development spokesperson Marama Davidson. ...
    3 days ago
  • Lake Brunner’s Mount Te Kinga to go Predator Free
    Fletcher Tabuteau, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Hon Eugenie Sage, Minister of Conservation The West Coast forests of Mount Te Kinga at Kotuku Whakaoho/Lake Brunner are the latest predator free project to receive Government funding, announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage and Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher ...
    6 days ago
  • Green Party welcomes crucial financial support for creatives
    The Green Party says new government support for creatives and artists is a vital lifeline for a sector struggling to survive the COVID crisis. ...
    6 days ago
  • Strongest ever water reforms mean swimmable rivers within a generation
    The Green Party says major freshwater reforms announced today provide the strongest ever protections of our waterways, to help ensure the next generation can swim in the rivers of Aotearoa. ...
    7 days ago
  • Greens work to secure inquiry into Wild West student accommodation sector
    The Green Party has begun the process for a Select Committee inquiry into student accommodation, which has been exposed during COVID-19 as an under-regulated sector that straddles students with unfair debt. ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand joins global search for COVID-19 vaccine
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Megan Woods, Minister of Research, Science and Innovation Hon Dr David Clark, Minister of Health Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods,  and Health Minister David Clark today announced a COVID-19 vaccine strategy, ...
    1 week ago
  • Budget 2020: Five things to know
    Budget 2020 is about rebuilding together, supporting jobs, getting business moving and the books back into the black. It’s an integral part of our COVID-19 economic response, and our plan to grow our economy and get New Zealand moving again. Here’s a quick look at the five top things you ...
    1 week ago
  • Coalition Government approves essential upgrades on Ōhakea Air Base
    The Coalition Government has approved $206 million in essential upgrades at Ōhakea Air Base.  Defence Minister Ron Mark said the money would be spent on improving old infrastructure. He said safety issues would be addressed, as well as upgrades to taxiways, accommodation and fresh, storm and waste water systems. "This ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Attributable to the Rt Hon Winston Peters
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First “I am not persisting with this case just for myself, but for all people who have had their privacy breached. Privacy of information is a cornerstone of our country’s democracy. Without it our society truly faces a bleak future. We now ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones moves to protect sawmills
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones has introduced a Bill to Parliament that he says will "force more transparency, integrity and respect" for the domestic wood-processing sector through the registration of log traders and practice standards. The Forests (Regulation of Log Traders and Forestry Advisers) Amendment Bill had its first reading in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green MP joins international call to cancel developing countries’ debt
    Green MP Golriz Ghahraman is joining over 300 lawmakers from around the world in calling on the big banks and the IMF to forgive the debt of developing countries, in the wake of the COVID crisis. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones swipes back at billion trees critics
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones says concerns that carbon foresters are planting pine trees that will never be harvested are the result of "misinformation". "The billion tree strategy is an excellent idea, unfortunately from time to time it's tainted by misinformation spread by the National Party or their grandees, hiding in scattered ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Budget boost for refugee families a win for compassion
    The Green Party welcomes funding in the budget to reunite more refugees with their families, ensuring they have the best chance at a new life in Aotearoa New Zealand. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • How Budget 2020 is supporting jobs
    This year’s Budget is about rebuilding New Zealand together in the face of COVID-19. Jobs are central to how we’re going to do that.There’s a lot of targeted investment for employment in this year’s Budget, with announcements on creating new jobs, training people for the jobs we have, and supporting ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Free period products in schools to combat poverty
    Young people in Waikato will be the first to have free access to period products in schools in another step to support children and young people in poverty,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.  During term 3, the Ministry of Education will begin providing free period products to schools following the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Response to charges in New Plymouth
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash has issued the following statement in response to charges filed against three Police officers this morning in the New Plymouth District Court. “Any incident involving a loss of life in Police custody is taken very seriously. The charges today reflect the gravity of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Temporary changes to NCEA and University Entrance this year
    Further temporary changes to NCEA and University Entrance (UE) will support senior secondary school students whose teaching and learning have been disrupted by COVID-19. “The wellbeing of students and teachers is a priority. As we are all aware, COVID-19 has created massive disruption to the school system, and the Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Extended terms for the directors of the Racing Industry Transition Agency
    Minister for Racing Winston Peters today announced that the terms for the directors of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) have been extended to 30 June 2021. Due to the COVID-19 crisis the transition period has been extended to ensure that the Racing Industry Bill can complete its progress through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Healthy Homes Standards statement of compliance deadline extended
    The deadline for landlords to include detailed information in their tenancy agreements about how their property meets the Healthy Homes Standards, so tenants can see the home they are renting is compliant, has been extended from 1 July 2020 to 1 December 2020.  The Healthy Homes Standards became law on 1 July 2019. The Standards are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission board appointments announced
    Justice Minister Andrew Little today announced details of further appointments to the Criminal Cases Review Commission. “I am pleased to announce Paula Rose QSO OStJ as Deputy Chief Commissioner for a term of five years commencing on 15 June 2020,” said Andrew Little. “I am also pleased to announce the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Release of initial list of supported training to aid COVID-19 recovery
    The Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) will pay costs of learners of all ages to undertake vocational education and training The fund will target support for areas of study and training that will give learners better employment prospects as New Zealand recovers from COVID-19 Apprentices working in all industries ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Emission trading reforms another step to meeting climate targets
    The Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will finally start to cut New Zealand’s greenhouse gas pollution as it was originally intended to, because of changes announced today by the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw. The changes include a limit on the total emissions allowed within the ETS, rules to ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Queen’s Birthday Honours highlights Pacific leadership capability in Aotearoa
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says the Queen’s Birthday 2020 Honours List provides an abundance of examples that Pacific people’s leadership capability is unquestionable in Aotearoa. “The work and the individuals we acknowledge this year highlights the kind of visionary examples and dedicated community leadership that we need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt backing horticulture to succeed
    The Government is backing a new $27 million project aimed at boosting sustainable horticulture production and New Zealand’s COVID-19 recovery efforts, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our economy. During and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Applications open for forestry scholarships
    Applications have opened for 2021 Ngā Karahipi Uru Rākau – Forestry Scholarships, which will support more Māori and women to pursue careers in forestry science, says Forestry Minister Shane Jones. “I’m delighted Te Uru Rākau is offering Ngā Karahipi Uru Rākau – Forestry Scholarships for the third year running. These ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Excellent service to nature recognised
    The Queen’s Birthday 2020 Honours List once again highlights the dedication by many to looking after our native plants and wildlife, including incredible work to restore the populations of critically endangered birds says Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage. Anne Richardson of Hororata has been made an Officer of the New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Wetlands and waterways gain from 1BT funding
    The Government will invest $10 million from the One Billion Trees Fund for large-scale planting to provide jobs in communities and improve the environment, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Forestry Minister Shane Jones have announced. New, more flexible funding criteria for applications will help up to 10 catchment groups plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New fund for women now open
    Organisations that support women are invited to apply to a new $1,000,000 fund as part of the Government’s COVID-19 response. “We know women, and organisations that support women, have been affected by COVID-19. This new money will ensure funding for groups that support women and women’s rights,” said Minister for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt supports King Country farmers to lift freshwater quality
    Healthier waterways are front and centre in a new project involving more than 300 King Country sheep, beef and dairy farmers. The Government is investing $844,000 in King Country River Care, a group that helps farmers to lift freshwater quality and farming practice, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced today. “Yesterday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Libraries to help with jobs and community recovery
    A major funding package for libraries will allow them to play a far greater role in supporting their communities and people seeking jobs as part of the economic recovery from COVID-19. “Budget 2020 contains over $60 million of funding to protect library services and to protect jobs,” says Internal Affairs ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Support for arts and music sector recovery
    A jobseekers programme for the creative sector and four new funds have been set up by the Government to help our arts and music industry recover from the blow of COVID-19. Thousands of jobs will be supported through today’s $175 million package in a crucial economic boost to support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Legislative changes to support the wellbeing of veterans and their families
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has welcomed the First Reading of a Bill that will make legislative changes to further improve the veterans’ support system.  The Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill No 2, which will amend the Veterans’ Support Act 2014, passed First Reading today. The bill addresses a number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Christ Church Cathedral – Order in Council
    Views sought on Order in Council to help fast track the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Hon Poto Williams, will be seeking public written comment, following Cabinet approving the drafting of an Order in Council aimed at fast-tracking the reinstatement of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealanders’ human rights better protected in new Bill
    The law setting out New Zealanders’ basic civil and human rights is today one step towards being strengthened following the first reading of a Bill that requires Parliament to take action if a court says a statute undermines those rights. At present, a senior court can issue a ‘declaration of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Deep concern at Hong Kong national security legislation
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today reiterated the deep concern of the New Zealand Government following confirmation by China’s National People’s Congress of national security legislation relating to Hong Kong. “New Zealand shares the international community’s significant and long-standing stake in Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability,” Mr Peters said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government invests in New Zealand’s cultural recovery
    Thousands of artists and creatives at hundreds of cultural and heritage organisations have been given much-needed support to recover from the impact of COVID-19, Prime Minister and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Jacinda Ardern announced today. “The cultural sector was amongst the worst hit by the global pandemic,” Jacinda ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Better protection for New Zealand assets during COVID-19 crisis
    Key New Zealand assets will be better protected from being sold to overseas owners in a way contrary to the national interest, with the passage of the Overseas Investment (Urgent Measures) Bill. The Bill, which passed its third reading in Parliament today, also cuts unnecessary red tape to help attract ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Cleaning up our rivers and lakes
    Setting higher health standards at swimming spots Requiring urban waterways to be cleaned up and new protections for urban streams Putting controls on higher-risk farm practices such as winter grazing and feed lots Setting stricter controls on nitrogen pollution and new bottom lines on other measures of waterway health Ensuring ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Record year for diversity on Govt boards
    The Government is on the verge of reaching its target of state sector boards and committees made up of at least 50 percent women, says Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter and Minister for Ethnic Communities Jenny Salesa. For the first time, the Government stocktake measures the number of Māori, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New appointments to the Commerce Commission
    The Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister and Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister, Kris Faafoi, has today announced the appointment of Tristan Gilbertson as the new Telecommunications Commissioner and member of the Commerce Commission. “Mr Gilbertson has considerable experience in the telecommunications industry and a strong reputation amongst his peers,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Historic pay equity settlement imminent for teacher aides
    The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa have agreed to settle the pay equity claim for teacher aides, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This will see more than 22,000 teacher aides, mostly women, being valued and paid fairly for the work they do. “Teacher aides are frontline ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt delivers security for construction subcontractors
    Subcontractors will have greater certainty, more cashflow support and job security with new changes to retention payments under the Construction Contracts Act says Minister for Building and Construction, Jenny Salesa. A recent review of the retentions money regime showed that most of the building and construction sector is complying with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and Singapore reaffirm ties
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have marked the first anniversary of the New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership with a virtual Leaders’ Meeting today. The Enhanced Partnership, signed on 17 May 2019, provides the framework for cooperation across the four main areas of trade, defence and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • JOINT STATEMENT BY THE PRIME MINISTERS OF NEW ZEALAND AND THE REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE ON THE FIRST AN...
    On 17 May 2019, New Zealand and Singapore established an Enhanced Partnership to elevate our relations. The Enhanced Partnership – based on the four pillars of trade and economics, security and defence, science, technology and innovation, and people-to-people links – has seen the long-standing relationship between our countries strengthen over the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government investment supports the acquisition of new Interislander ferries
    State-Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters has welcomed KiwiRail’s announcement that it is seeking a preferred shipyard to build two new rail-enabled ferries for the Cook Strait crossing. “This Government is committed to restoring rail to its rightful place in New Zealand. Bigger, better ships, with new technology are yet another ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Better protection for seabirds
    Better protection for seabirds is being put in place with a new National Plan of Action to reduce fishing-related captures, Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today.   The National Plan of Action for Seabirds 2020 outlines our commitment to reduce fishing-related captures and associated seabird ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Milestone in cash flow support to SMEs
    Almost $1 billion in interest-free loans for small businesses More than 55,000 businesses have applied; 95% approved Average loan approx. $17,300 90% of applications from firms with ten or fewer staff A wide cross-section of businesses have applied, the most common are the construction industry, accommodation providers, professional firms, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government protects kids as smoking in cars ban becomes law
    Thousands of children will have healthier lungs after the Government’s ban on smoking in cars with kids becomes law, says Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa. This comes after the third reading of Smoke-free Environments (Prohibiting Smoking in Motor Vehicles Carrying Children) Amendment Bill earlier today. “This law makes it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Parliament returns to a safe normal
    The special Epidemic Response Committee (ERC) has successfully concluded its role, Leader of the House Chris Hipkins said today. The committee was set up on 25 March by the agreement of Parliament to scrutinise the Government and its actions while keeping people safe during levels 4 and 3 of lockdown. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Foreign Minister makes four diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced four diplomatic appointments: New Zealand’s Ambassador to Belgium, High Commissioners to Nauru and Niue, and Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism. “As the world seeks to manage and then recover from COVID-19, our diplomatic and trade networks are more important than ever,” Mr Peters said. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Bill to counter violent extremism online
    New Zealanders will be better protected from online harm through a Bill introduced to Parliament today, says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin. “The internet brings many benefits to society but can also be used as a weapon to spread harmful and illegal content and that is what this legislation targets,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Mycoplasma bovis eradication reaches two year milestone in good shape
    New Zealand’s world-first plan to eradicate the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis is on track the latest technical data shows, says Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two years ago the Government, DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand and industry partners made a bold decision to go hard and commit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New payment to support Kiwis through COVID
    Further support for New Zealanders affected by 1-in-100 year global economic shock 12-week payment will support people searching for new work or retraining Work programme on employment insurance to support workers and businesses The Government today announced a new temporary payment to support New Zealanders who lose their jobs due ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PGF reset helps regional economies
    The Provincial Growth Fund will play a vital role in New Zealand’s post-COVID-19 recovery by creating jobs in shorter timeframes through at least $600 million being refocused on projects with more immediate economic benefits, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The funding is comprised of repurposed Provincial Growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago