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The Standard Week: August 15-22

Written By: - Date published: 12:39 pm, August 22nd, 2008 - 54 comments
Categories: standard week - Tags:

As expected, the polls out last weekend did not show National being hit by the secret agenda tapes scandal because they were conducted before the story had fully emerged. We will have to wait for the next round of polls to see what effect there has been – although sources say both National and Labour’s internal polling shows the gap narrowing by 4-5% already. A Colmar Brunton poll, also conducted before the secret agenda tapes had fully emerged, showed voters do not believe National is being open about its plans and do not support its borrowing for tax cuts policy. Other than the polls, there was a grab-bag of smaller issues, but look forward to fireworks when Parliament resumes next week for the last session before the election. Here are our favourite posts of the week:

Ambitious for transport
Why are we spending $1 billion on Transmission Gully when by the time it is finished the price of petrol will be up to $10 a litre according to a study by the Australian CSIRO?..[more]

Did you say “wages”, John?
That’s nice to hear but given National’s policy is to reduce work rights and make it harder for working Kiwis to negotiate a better deal it seems a bit rich….I guess it’s this kind of credibility gap between what National says and what it does that makes it so hard for voters to trust them….[more]

Reviewing the weekend polls
As I said last week, the polls that came out this weekend can not reflect any impact of the secret agenda tapes…Labour will be heartened to have moved up in 2 of the polls (including an 8% gain in the last two Colmar Brunton polls) and recorded no change in the third. The Greens polled under 5% in two of the three polls, but nobody seriously expects that they won’t win 5% on election day… [more]

Greens call for public input on ETS
The Greens should vote for the ETS not because it is perfect but because it is good, because it has been improved by negotiations between Labour and the Greens, and because the alternative is much worse…[more]

Nats: some of us look like youse
you’ve got a woman at 7, another at 10, yet more at 17 and 20 – you’re talking up to four women in a National Cabinet! And two of them aren’t even Pakeha!…good on National for joining the twentieth century. I look forward to the day they move beyond tokenism but I won’t be holding my breath…[more]

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54 comments on “The Standard Week: August 15-22”

  1. Rob 1

    Over all a good week for National John will be happy came through the polls well. People like their pragmatic approach to Energy. Welfare also has the support of the Majority.

    A few problems for the Labourites with the flavoured condoms getting a lot of exposure yet still no Herceptin very touchy subject.

    The Sex Ed in school caused some very lively debate and would expect that to come up in the house next week in terms of the Material they are handing out. Labour is obviously trying to desensitise people realign their moral compass but don’t believe its working for them.

    ETS is going to be a problem Greens worried about the cost on the average person. Also Labour wont declare where the money is going so just becomes another Cullen Tax, Labour with a real chance of being defeated not a good footing to start off a Election platform.

    Summary pretty good week for Crosby keys & textor

  2. watch out, jokers and jokesses, the Majority has spoken via that medium of world renown – Rob.

  3. MikeE 3

    Any comments on the EMPU’s treatment on Shawn Tan from a “workers” perspective?

    I see Idiot/Savant is against it

    http://norightturn.blogspot.com/2008/08/just-not-on.html

    Surely the standard would be against such a disgusting abuse of workers rights by this terrible employer.

  4. Rob 4

    Steve sorry there was one thing I forgot to add there is still the Saga of Winston hanging around Helen even though she is trying to distance herself from it. It appears to be getting murkier by the day I mean who would not remember or forget whether they paid a $40000 bill or not. It funny how the tune changed when they got caught out do we believe him Yeaa Right !! just another casualty of the EFA rather ironical I think.

  5. Rob 5

    Just as the Police have decided to charge the man who flicked his Sons ear in Christchurch. Great news the Bradford / Clark bill will be gone by Lunch time. Helen will’try and defend not holding it with the Election but wont make her look very good.
    A referendum will be held on anti-smacking laws after parliamentary officials confirmed a petition calling for the ballot had enough valid signatures.

    The Clerk of the House said an audit of the petition found that 310,000 of the 390,000 signatures were valid.

    This was 25,000 more than needed to trigger a referendum.

    Petition organiser Larry Baldock said the vote should be held in conjunction with the election.

    The Government has ruled this out, saying it would best be held as a postal ballot next year.

    [lprent: Enough. Putting you into moderation. This isn’t a damn news service for talkback or Wishart repeater clones. You’re annoying me and a high proportion of commentators. Take a weeks ban for being a bloody nuisance.

    I have to say that you’ve just had a unique accolade. You don’t fit any of the usual criteria, but I’ll add a section to the Policy about what I’ll do for bloody nuisance.

    This is one time I’ll invite comment about a decision (of course I’ll make my own decision). However I suspect it is going to be quite popular. ]

  6. Matthew Pilott 6

    Any comments on the EMPU’s treatment on Shawn Tan from a “workers’ perspective?

    Depends how long he will need to campaign… Common courtesy would dictate you inform your boss if you’ll need a few months off.

    I’m glad to see, MikeE, that you’ve come so far around you think that an employee should be able to walk off their job and expect to have it waiting for them three months later, without mentioning why to their boss.

    Tell you what – you’ve got an even stronger opinion about it than I – but it’s wonderful to see you recognising the inherent imbalance in power between worker and employer, the necesity for strong employment law protection for workers, and that you’re throwing your full support behind the workers. I look forward to reading further comments from you and your newly-found extreme pro-workers’ rights viewpoint!

  7. MikeE 7

    “However, he said his supervisor told him he should resign if he was thinking about standing for Act when he first raised the subject.”

    Mathhew…. I believe the above would amount to constructive dismissal in anyones books…

    Also from the EPMU website:

    “Discrimination means that the employer has not treated the worker in the same way as other workers because of the worker’s:

    * Sex
    * Religious beliefs
    * Colour
    * Ethnicity
    * Age
    * Employment status
    * Sexual orientation
    * Marital status
    * Ethical beliefs
    * Race
    * Disability
    * Political opinion
    * Family status
    * Union involvement”

    http://www.epmu.org.nz/discrimination-2/

  8. Matthew Pilott 8

    MikeE, I was going on the story that said he decided to run without telling his employer, despite the time required to do so.

    If he’d done the same for a holiday would you be here asking the same?

    Good to see you supporting the goals and aims of the EPMU. I look forward to your words of encouragement for workers, and against employers, in all further industrial disputes.

    You could start out with agreeing to the following: “Act are scum as they refuse to deal with Unions in principle.”

  9. Billy 9

    Lprent, since you asked…

    Banning someone for being annoying? How come you keep letting Rogernome comment?

    [lprent: He doesn’t cause me extra work – see my comment below]

  10. Matthew Pilott 10

    Lprent – make it a new category, willful ignorance! It’s not just annoying, constant threadjacking does prevent a good debate.

    After all that I’m going to say that this is the one post that I think Rob-style comments would be tolerated (i.e. a bit of a Friday Misc thread, but a few links, accurate comments and less clipping-service style stuff would be the go) but pretty much all of the others have been nuked, none of them vaguely close to the topic. Not exactly constructive.

  11. Billy – as a special treat you can ban roger for a day next time he comments on our blog…

  12. Billy 12

    Must you address me as if I am wearing a gimp suit?

  13. Also from the EPMU website:

    Ha! From the Act party 20 point plan:

    12 Labour. Allow freedom of contract to make it easier to trial new workers and replace poor performers. Business runs better with right staff. Workers and company earn more. Contract protects both parties.

    http://www.act.org.nz/files/pledge/20pointplan.pdf

    Ironically if Tan’s party had their way he wouldn’t have a leg to stand on – I suspect he still doesn’t…

    What a dick.

    edit: Billy – I thought it was my turn to wear the suit!

  14. Matthew Pilott 14

    When you to are old men will you play chess in the park and bicker like…old men? I hope so.

  15. Anita 15

    lprent,

    Being a bloody nuisance is very subjective.

    Making shit up, on the other hand, is clear as day – repeatedly using masses of completely incorrect and unreferenced facts, making no attempt to correct factual errors, and showing no interest in moving towards being truthful is easy to assess.

    I know it probably pisses me off a lot more than it does most people, but… 🙂

    I really think that there is a problem with allowing completely untrue pseudo-facts to stand uncorrected in the comments; for a start someone might actually believe them, and they might even attribute them to The Standard, it uses The Standard’s cred to spread bullshit. One off srcew ups are one thing, repeated barefaced inaccuracy is another.

    Thanks for listening 🙂

  16. Billy 16

    To demonstrate your point, Matthew Pilott:

    ‘sod, just why do you suspect Tan doesn’t have a leg to stand on? Are you in favour of employers sacking employees for their political affiliations?

    If, as Matthew has pretended, it is because they are concerned about his ability to perform both jobs (oh, puhlease) surely natural justice wouldn’t allow a summary suspension.

  17. Anita 17

    My understanding of employment law precedent (someone please correct me – this is rusty!!) is that there is an acceptance that the actions of an employee may be so inconsistent with the business of the employer that the employee’s behaviour, in and of itself, undermines the employment relationship.

    Say, for example, someone who was a public face of an organisation trying to reduce NZ’s binge drinking spent their off hours encouraging binge drinking by 18-24 year old (by running alcohol centred events for example), that behaviour was picked up by the media, the employee did not change it, and it undermined their ability to speak credibly against binge drinking, and undermined the employer’s position and authority. I believe that in that circumstance the employee’s employment relationship could be altered or terminated because their actions have significantly damaged it.

    Does that sound right/fair?

  18. higherstandard 18

    Begs the question as to why the EPMU didn’t just say that all their employees are welcome to participate in the democratic process and just leave it at that.

    If Mr Tan gets into parliament he’ll have to leave the EPMU to take up his new job.

    Seems to me the EPMU have played this poorly

  19. higherstandard 19

    Anita

    Bit of a long bow to suggest participating in the democratic process is inconsistent with the business of the EPMU.

  20. Matthew Pilott 20

    Apparently it’s in their contract that if they are thinking of a candidacy they must inform their employer.

    Anyone else find it ironic that sokmeone running for Act would willfully violate a work contract, especially in light of ‘sod’s comment above? So much for contracts protecting both parties!

    Billy – why ‘pretended’? Do you think running for parliament is a 7pm – 8:30pm every second Tuesday kind of affair?

    HS – I suppose the EPMU could have allowed him to violate his contract wilfully, but that isn’t something they should have to suffer to ‘play’ a situation well…

  21. Matthew Pilott 21

    Bit of a long bow to suggest participating in the democratic process is inconsistent with the business of the EPMU.

    Bit of a long bow to suggest that running for a party that would happily destroy all ability for the EPMU to function isn’t inconsistent with working for the EPMU…

  22. lprent 22

    Anita: All of the moderation on here is totally subjective and up to the moderators judgement. For instance one persons troll is another’s “Telling it like it is”, personal attack from one persons viewpoint could be calling them anything whereas another wouldn’t blink an eye, one persons inaccurate facts are another’s “brave attempt to overthrow entrenched orthodoxy” (eg in the climate change debate), etc.

    Generally I’ll (usually) tolerate quite a lot in ambiguous situations because I think the debate is worth having even when I disagree strongly (eg climate change).

    In this case, the deciding factor isn’t even any one of these. It is a combination that requires I have to spend too much time reading comments and debate that is essentially about bugger all.

    Each time someone complains about someone else here, I usually have to track back to the relevant comment to see if there is a good reason (ie the personal attack provisions). Rob has a goodly number of these against him and the level of personal attack in each comment is rising. Almost all of them are about partial (but usually not full) inaccuracies. Rather than having to eventually ban people who are complaining about him, I’ll ban the cause.

    So in this case he was becoming a bloody nuisance – to me. That is what he is getting banned for, and hopefully he’ll modify his behavior when he gets back on.

    Billy: I think that also answers your query about roger as well. Also why I don’t ban d4j or randal for the same reasons. They don’t cause me extra and unnecessary work.

  23. Daveo 23

    This is an Act party beatup. The union’s rules and collective agreement appear to be very clear, staff who wish to stand for public office must get approval from the national executive.

    Tan broke his contract, he got suspended pending an investigation (possibly on full pay for all we know). There’s no story here.

    It’s also worth pointing out that there’s a major conflict of interest between being a union organiser and an Act party candidate. You can’t credibly spend half your time helping workers to enforce their rights and spend the other half trying to remove those rights.

  24. Daveo 24

    Mike: Idiot/Savant is a terribly excitable nobody who’s inclined to fly off the rails before all the facts are in. This plays right into the hands of people like Farrar who then use his misinformed outrage to give the right a moral highground they don’t deserve.

    To cut to the chase, I wouldn’t put too much stock in his analysis.

  25. Gustavo Trellis 25

    You can’t write a contract that negates the law either.

  26. higherstandard 26

    MP and Daveo

    “You can’t credibly spend half your time helping workers to enforce their rights and spend the other half trying to remove those rights.”

    “Bit of a long bow to suggest that running for a party that would happily destroy all ability for the EPMU to function isn’t inconsistent with working for the EPMU.”

    I didn’t know ACT was running on a ticket of banning Unions ?

  27. CMR 27

    I have just heard the lawyer for Mr Tan speaking to Larry on Newstalk ZB.

    The lawyer is confident that Mr Tan will proceed to the Employment Court. Good luck to him.

    The behaviour of the union thugs is graphic in this context. How can anybody on this blog simply dismiss it as an “Act party beatup” (Sic!)

    Please note the lawyer does not believe Tan has been “suspended pending an investigation!” (As Daveo states.)

    Mr Pilott optimistically suggests common courtesy ought dictate the circumstances here. Excuse me! The alleged facts from Mr Tan’s lawyer’s perspective admit he DID attempt to give notice but on doing so was summarily tossed from his job! Is this any form of courtesy? Certainly not “common courtesy.”

    While all employers have the right to set the conduct of employees the action by this union is unspeakably grotesque. How do they treat their members? Bloody hell the thought is a scare!

  28. higherstandard 28

    What’s next – producing propaganda and demanding their members only vote for certain parties ?

  29. randal 29

    hs…randal will start a morons party and force you to vote for it.

  30. Matthew Pilott 30

    I didn’t know ACT was running on a ticket of banning Unions ?

    Read my comment again… You were discusing inconsistency and long bows, I elucidated.

    CMR – I guess there’s a reason I don’t rely on Talkback. I might wait until the real facts come out. As I gather, Mr Tan did not inform his employer, as he was contractually obliged to; this was the cause of his suspension. As to what you say, the obligation is to inform your employer before the fact, not after. I wouldn’t take either of the two stories as Holy Writ though, as you’ve chosen to.

    I suppose you have to, though, to muster such righteous indignation.

  31. Anita 31

    hs,

    Bit of a long bow to suggest participating in the democratic process is inconsistent with the business of the EPMU.

    It doesn’t seem that the issue was Tan’s involvement in a democratic process as a whole. It was an issue of the party he chose to be very publicly aligned with, the extent of his public alignment, and the policies of that party.

    If, for example, a school teacher were to stand for a political party whose sole objective was the legalisation of sex between adults and children, I suspect their promotion of that viewpoint might be seen as undermining the employment relationship between the teacher and the school.

    I am not saying the Tan/ACT/EPMU situation is that clearcut, but nor is it as clearcut as those who’d argue it should have absolutely no effect on this employment. There is black, white and grey in this area of employment law and political participation.

  32. Draco TB 32

    The lawyer is confident that Mr Tan will proceed to the Employment Court. Good luck to him.

    He’s certainly going to need it. Willfully breaking contract isn’t defensible.

    EDIT: Willfully breaking contract also indicates that he’s not ready for government either.

    Please note the lawyer does not believe Tan has been “suspended pending an investigation!’

    The alleged facts from Mr Tan’s lawyer’s perspective admit he DID attempt to give notice but on doing so was summarily tossed from his job!

    Facts tend to be essential here and so far you haven’t provided any. Neither has the lawyer.

    While all employers have the right to set the conduct of employees the action by this union is unspeakably grotesque.

    In what way?
    He broke contract and was suspended for doing so. Seems perfectly normal to me.

  33. Sarah 33

    So if anyone provides an opposing view lprent you ban them?

    Sure the presentation of his arguments isn’t fantastic but he’s perfectly entitled to make the points he’s making.

    It’s a discussion of the week in review. He’s commenting on the week in review. But because he makes some points that come from a source you don’t agree with (“Wishart repeater clones”) you ban him. I’m sure if he did the same from a lef-wing source, he would not get the same punishment.

    All you’re doing is banning anyone who has a view opposite to you, so when the time comes to discuss a point of importance, no one will disagree with you because there simply isn’t anyone left to argue back.

    That’s not a democracy. It’s a joke.

    [lprent: This blog isn’t a democracy – it is private property – I pay for it. The reason Rob got a ban was because he was chewing too much of my valuable time. Do you think that I should waste my time unproductively? If he added something to the site it wouldn’t have been a problem. But most of the comments directed towards Rob’s comments was about how inaccurate his information was. ]

  34. CMR 34

    Draco: Have you read the contract? I have read many in my time and while there are a series of customary provisions it is not essential that all employment contracts are identical. If you have not actually read the contract which pertainsd to Mr Tan’s employment then you are rather presumptuous are you not?

    Breach of contract is defensible on numerous grounds: Frustration: Common Mistake: Vis Major: etc…

  35. Bill 35

    Interesting reading through the comments relating to Shawn Tan. So he’s suspended on full pay because he apparently did not declare a conflict of interest. That’s how it’s reading to me.

    But the question being begged, which no-one has touched on is, I would have thought, blindingly obvious.

    How many more ‘Shawn Tans’ are there within the union movement and what does that say about the state of NZ’s union movement?

    Once upon a time unionists were unionists. It would have been unthinkable that a union organiser could hold views in line with those of the Act Party.

    Has unionism degenerated to become a vehicle for careerists and opportunists? How can a person work in a workers organisation and be so removed from working class roots?

    If Shawn Tan has been discriminated against (and I very much doubt he has been) then he will get compensation.

    But as I have said, I really do not think that is the pertinent point here. What the hell was he doing working for a union in the first place!?

  36. vto 36

    As someone else said ‘imagine if the employer had been BusinessNZ or some such and Tan had wanted to stand for labour or the greens’. The shrieking would be heard across the land.

    interesting interesting. Whatcha gonna do Mr Little?

    Also, are the greens in fact doing a Lockwood Smith and swallowing a dead rat over the ETS?

    interesting interesting. Where are those principles so loudly stated over the tapergate thing?

  37. higherstandard 37

    Anita I find your example nauseating

  38. Lew 38

    Interesting situation.

    My initial position was that of Idiot/Savant – that he should get his job back. However the suspension was not that he was standing for the ACT party – it’s that he breached contract by standing for office without seeking approval first; and indeed, having been informed he should seek approval, and then having failed to do so.

    All that said – this seems to me a very minor breach. `Breach of contract’ is a symbolic term which anyone who believes in the rule of law will decry, absent additional information. However as others have noted there are defences for some breaches of contract, and in some cases it’s justifiable.

    In this situation it seems the EPMU has been mean-spirited; but it’s important to remember that the game’s not up yet. Pending the disciplinary process, they can yet show themselves to be bigger than the political scandal by standing up for this worker’s rights, and backing to the hilt his right to stand for office for whatever party he sees fit as long as it doesn’t prevent him doing his job. I’ll watch with interest.

    I also have some sympathy for Bill’s point: what the hell was someone with ACT sympathies doing working for the EPMU in the first place? This rests upon the presumption that ACT is inherently opposed to the union movement, and instinctively I think it is. Anita’s point (distasteful but illustrative example aside) is also relevant: it may be that the EPMU considers this a position which undermines his credibility as an EPMU staffer.

    What’s clear from all this is how political the union movement is – in a micro sense, as well as a macro sense.

    L

  39. higherstandard 39

    Not another moron’s party Randal surely we already have enough in NZ.

  40. Anita 40

    hs,

    Anita I find your example nauseating

    Sorry 🙁

    I was trying to find an utterly totally clear example, and that was the best I could come up with. ’tis clear though :-/

  41. Draco TB 41

    As it stands the situation is:

    Tan was suspended for breach of contract. Not fired or dismissed but suspended. A valid action by the employer where a potential conflict of interest arises from the breach in contract.

    Human rights would be an issue if he had been fired immediately which he wasn’t. He announced several months ago that he was a member of ACT and kept his job and, by all appearances so far, was discriminated against in any way. Further, the law takes into account conflicts of interest so, if a conflict of interest is proved which is likely considering that the two political institutions involved are ideologically opposed, there would be no human rights issue if the EPMU do dismiss him.

    Breach of contract is defensible on numerous grounds:

    Yeah, agreed. This isn’t one of them though due to the potential for a conflict of interest.

    What’s clear from all this is how political the union movement is – in a micro sense, as well as a macro sense.

    The union movement has always been political. They’ve always striven to change the way society operates. Labour came about as their political arm when they finally realised that just protesting wasn’t working and that they needed someone on the inside of parliament.

  42. dave 42

    This is not just about breach of contract, it is about human rights. If an employer was to breach the an employees human rights by telling him he should resign if he stood for a certain political party, because of the political party stood for, while telling him not to bother asking for permission as he wont get it – then a persons human rights was breached before a contract was breached.

    And Anita, that was a pretty bad example. Do try harder.

  43. higherstandard 43

    No problem Anita, I just thought the comparison was overly ugly.

    What’s your take on why ACT’s policies are such an anathema to the EPMU that they feel they have to go down this track.

    I find the whole thing completely topsy turvy in that a supposed protector of employees rights is acting against what they’re supposed to promote, while people supporting the right for individual contracts are taking the opposite view.

  44. Anita 44

    hs,

    What’s your take on why ACT’s policies are such an anathema to the EPMU

    I don’t have a detailed view on this, and am unlikely to gain on while stuck on the end of a slooooow modem link. But I can guess wildly 🙂

    ACT’s pledgecard says:

    Allow freedom of contract to make it easier to trial new workers and replace poor performers

    I can’t find any more detail on what they mean by this (either their website has a blank page in their policies section or modem speed is causing me grief), but I would guess that it is an even more radical variant of National’s 90-days free fire trial period as well as some alterations to the ERA to make firing easier.

    The EPMU has come out strongly against National’s proposal, and led the campaign against Mapp’s earlier attempt. So we’re talking about someone working for the EPMU and campaigning for a stronger version of something the EPMU is campaigning against.

    Much like a ramped up version of my (hopefully less ugly) binge drinking example.

  45. higherstandard 45

    With my tongue firmly in my cheek can you I say that I would have thought that the EPMU should be all for making it easier to trial new workers and can only shy away from the replacement of poor performers if the think employers will abuse the right to replace poor performance which is after all already a reason for replacing staff.

    I’m getting the distinct feeling that the EPMU is one of the weaker unions in NZ and is far too heavily involved in the affairs of the Labour party and vice versa – they should take a leaf out of some of the other prominent union’s books and concentrate more on working for their members and less on playing politics.

  46. Daveo 46

    Lew. There’s a lot of information swirling around the movement at the moment that isn’t in the media. Be careful not to form your opinions on the basis of sensationalist media stories or the excitable moral outrage of Idiot/Savant.

    Why was he in there in the first place? I don’t know Shawn personally but the story goes that as recently as two months ago he was a leading green party activist and had previously been employed by two other unions. Mu understanding is he’s very immature and was easily bought off with an offer of a place on the act party list. This story is just a little exercise in self-promotion on Tan’s part.

    Higherstandard. I’m an EPMU member and they’re at the forefront of the new zealand union movement both politically and industrially. Think four weeks annual leave campaign, fair share 5% in 05, the campaign against the 90 day bill, stopping the air nz engineering jobs going overseas. I’d be interested to hear if you have any basis for that comment other than right wing blog talking points.

  47. Anita 47

    hs,

    With my tongue firmly in my cheek can you I say that I would have thought that the EPMU should be all for making it easier to trial new workers

    With my tongue equally firmly in my cheeck can I say I think you should join the EPMU and advocate for a change in policy? 🙂

    But back to reality for a moment… given what the EPMU is campaigning for, and what ACT is campaigning for, what do you think of the situation around Tan?

  48. Draco TB 48

    Eeep :0

    …by all appearances so far, was discriminated against in any way.

    That’s supposed to say wasn’t

  49. higherstandard 49

    Anita

    On the face of it my thoughts are that Tan sounds a bit odd and that the EPMU should just have kept their traps shut.

  50. bill brown 50

    Lynne, wrt Rob,

    It’s only the thread jacking that I find to be a pain in the arse, if his comments are on topic then so be it – if they’re inaccurate they’re usually easy to refute – bit of easy meat to help break up the day.

    Oh, and I’ll miss his naked yearning for JK – it always warms my heart.

  51. higherstandard 51

    Daveo

    Just my opinion but I think Laila Harre, Deborah Powell etc do a better job.

    The EPMU just seems too spend much time trumpeting Labour good National bad all the time.

  52. Daveo 52

    Laila Harre does good work, Deborah Powell is a crook who runs her union like a business and has been convicted of rigging a union election ballot. Shows how much you know about the trade union movement ‘higherstandard’.

    Mate you seem like a good sort, so I’d advise you to steer clear of the crap you hear on Kiwiblog and come to debates like this armed with facts before slagging off my union.

  53. Daveo 53

    “the EPMU should just have kept their traps shut.”

    They did – it was Tan who went squealing to the media to beat this minor employment disagreement into a story.

    From my experience as a union delegate going back twenty years he’s almost certain to get the sack now, but then I suspect that’s what he wanted all along.

  54. randal 54

    if he is anything like wodney he will be squealing like a weasel and acting like a toad…that is the act style my friend…sad but true!

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    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    6 hours ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    8 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    8 hours ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    8 hours ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    12 hours ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    12 hours ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    1 day ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    1 day ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 day ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 day ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 day ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 day ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 days ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    2 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    2 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    2 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    3 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    3 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    3 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    4 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    4 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    5 days ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    5 days ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    5 days ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    6 days ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    6 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    6 days ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    6 days ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    6 days ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    7 days ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    1 week ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    1 week ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    1 week ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    1 week ago

  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
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    2 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
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    2 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
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    2 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
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    3 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
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    3 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
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    5 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
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    5 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
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    6 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
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    6 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
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    6 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
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    1 week ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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    1 week ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
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    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
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    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
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    1 week ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
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    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
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    1 week ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
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    1 week ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
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    1 week ago