web analytics

True Blue Worker Hate

Written By: - Date published: 9:40 am, April 9th, 2013 - 32 comments
Categories: business, capitalism, class war, uncategorized, Unions, wages, workers' rights - Tags:

Any day now the Government will announce more changes to the Employment Relations Act.  These changes will drive down wages and undermine the conditions of all workers.  They will also remove the small amount of protection most cleaners and hospitality workers get when the business they are working for loses a contract to another contractor.

The changes will be hard to campaign around.  “Retain the Duty to Conclude” just doesn’t have a ring about it that will rally people into action.  Key will say the changes are “adjustments” and minor.  They will advertise the fact they are expanding the flexible working arrangements provisions to make it easier for people to request flexible hours (there provisions are fairly well useless for most workers).

There are lots of nasties hidden in the Governments plans.  For example they will give the employer the right to deduct wages for industrial action like refusing certain duties that fall short of actual strikes (an aged care worker for example could still work 40 hours but refuse to prepare the rosters.  The employer could deduct wages for this and say pay for only 36 hours etc).  The law changes will also require all workers to give and withdraw notice formally before taking strike action or ending it.  But the two king hit changes will take the law very close to the Employment Contracts Act (ECA) when combined with the previous changes, and is true blue worker hate.

The first major change will remove the current duty in the Act to conclude a collective agreement when a group of workers is seeking one.  Currently an employer can refuse to settle on an issue (so for example if they disagree with a wage claim), but they can’t walk away on ideological grounds from the bargaining (i.e. not wanting a collective agreement at all).  The new law will remove the obligation to conclude allowing instead for surface bargaining by employers who have no intention to settle.  The law change in our view is likely to have a process to determine that that the bargaining has concluded (e.g. application to the Employment Court) even though settlement has not been reached – this is where the ghost of the ECA comes to life.

If bargaining is deemed concluded without a settlement, strikes in pursuit of a collective become unlawful (workers can only strike as long as the bargaining continues).  Collective Agreements in NZ currently continue for one year after expiry to allow time for negotiating a renewal but only as long as the bargaining continues.  This change will also allow the collective to end in an untimely way leaving workers without coverage and probably will allow the employer to promote “take it or else” individual agreements.  The second nasty little piece of the jigsaw in the new law will remove the protection for new workers to be offered the collective agreement (where one exists) for the first 30 days of employment – instead allowing them to be offered inferior conditions – isolating them from the union and putting at risk those on the collective as the numbers covered by it diminish.

So how does all this fit together?   Firstly securing a collective agreement will become much more difficult.  Employers will use the provisions releasing them from the duty to conclude to seek concessions including over who is covered by the agreement.  They will seek to exclude new workers altogether now they are not compelled to offer them the agreement.  They won’t want new workers being able to bypass the new changes by simply joining the union to gain collective coverage.

Workers will be in an impossible bind:

  • They can strike for a collective renewal – already high risk and difficult with low wage workers in particular, and face all the new difficulties.
  • They can settle collectives that exclude new workers and watch the conditions of the collective and union membership whittle away as the workforce     splits in two.
  • They can campaign and hold out, risking a determination that the bargaining is concluded which will remove the right to strike all together and cancel the remaining term of the expired collective.

During all this time all types of undermining behaviour can be undertaken by the employer as new coverage options become available to them.    Far from promoting collective bargaining as New Zealand’s international obligations require them to do, these law changes will again see workers effectively forced on to individual unilaterally determined by the employer.

The Employment Contracts Act allowed all these things to happen – limited coverage in contracts, individual agreement offers to new workers and union members when contracts expired, severe restrictions on the right to strike, opportunities for new workers to be exploited and de-unionised.   It will be hard to explain to the public that this is in fact what the law changes mean – but workers will see exactly that when the rubber hits the road.

The law, if these changes go ahead, will still include good faith provisions and in that regard remains slightly superior to the ECA but without any outcome obligations this is a marginal benefit and these obligations will be effectively removed for all new employees who may also be on a 90 day trial period.  You can imagine how companies like Talleys and the Ports of Auckland might use these new provisions.

The other massive change will be to Part 6A which offers protection to cleaners and hospitality workers when for example a building owner or sports facility choses to change contractors.   The Government plans to remove these protections for workers who are employed by smaller companies.   I will write more about this later but it is dire for these workers in regards to their employment security and wages and conditions.

We will campaign on these changes – we want your ideas as well and need your support.  Get in touch!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

32 comments on “True Blue Worker Hate”

  1. karol 1

    Thanks for the clear explanation of this proposed change, Helen.

    It does indeed amount to worker hatred on the part of Key’s elites.

    It is part of the way Key’s government operates – seemingly small changes, that are part of a raft of inter-related changes. They add up to radical change that will make the lives of the less well-off harder, and that further undermines democracy and social justice.

  2. Dave 2

    The hate campaign continues against workers advocates. Thatcher was of the same mind as Key,enough of the meddling unions improving on behalf of the lower class.Let’s legislate them into oblivion thereby creating the third world status we have worked so hard to achieve.How dare they work to live,bring back workshops that force them to live to work.

  3. Tom Gould 3

    And as with all such things, Helen, when the government holds all the cards, and the loudest megaphone, the issue quickly becomes how you and your colleagues react. Will they ‘preach to the converted’ by spewing out 1960s slogans and 1950s ‘worker’ rhetoric and further marginalise their cause, or will they be smart and connect with the lives and hopes of the ‘unconverted’? My money’s on the former.

    • ghostrider888 3.1

      that is an Excellent point Tom Gould

    • Olwyn 3.2

      @Tom: the big question is how that is to be done. You may be right in saying that 60s and 70s rhetoric no longer works, but conceding what little ground you have as an alternative puts you even further behind the eight ball. People see straight through nothing dressed up as something when they are on the sharp end of things. I am not saying that this is what you are advocating, I am saying that the question as to what we can now do in the hope of being genuinely effective should be the question on all of our minds.

      • Colonial Viper 3.2.1

        I am saying that the question as to what we can now do in the hope of being genuinely effective should be the question on all of our minds.

        Well, it’s not going to be through any major political party or through Parliament.

        • Tom Gould 3.2.1.1

          I don’t hold out much hope, primarily because those devising the strategy have locked themselves into a sort-of ideological straight-jacket, rendering their tactics entirely predictable. The trade union movement, and moreover its leadership, has failed to adapt to the prevailing orthodoxy which has been around for nearly 30 years. Meanwhile, just about everyone else has moved on and life for most people is unrecognisable from that in the ‘union bubble’. No wonder it is so easy for Key and his cronies to make their ‘minor changes’. In the minds of the vast bulk of people, that’s exactly what they are. Once was a time when the trade union movement was embraced by this very same cohort as a force for progress, for making their lives better, taping into the inherent aspirations of people for a better future for themselves and their families. Through indolence and indulgence, the unions are now seen as a force for making things worse, and life harder for people. QED.

  4. Lanthanide 4

    More than anything else, it is these sort of changes that I hate National for. They come in, fuck everything up for several years and Labour has to come back and fix it, which coincides with increased economic growth. Then National come back in and fuck everything up again while saying the changes are required to improve economic growth which seems to be forever out of their grasp.

  5. xtasy 5

    Quote:
    “If bargaining is deemed concluded without a settlement, strikes in pursuit of a collective become unlawful (workers can only strike as long as the bargaining continues). Collective Agreements in NZ currently continue for one year after expiry to allow time for negotiating a renewal but only as long as the bargaining continues. This change will also allow the collective to end in an untimely way leaving workers without coverage and probably will allow the employer to promote “take it or else” individual agreements.”

    This and the other changes that appear to be introduced, are in essence the Employment Contracts Act revisited and reinstated, in slightly moderate form.

    So here we have it, workers’ rights removed once again by stealth, by gradual piece by piece law changes, done in a manner, and under the pretence of it all being “minor changes”, so that the mainstream media may not even bother looking at it, that the wider public hear nothing about it, and that the already decimated unions will have to run more campaigns, do networking and lobbying, which will drain their resources.

    It is disgusting, and it is a damned time that workers out there realise once and for all: You are ALL in this together, this is not just affecting a few people here or there, one day this will bite virtually every worker.

    The huge problem is people are so individually minded now, and there is such an atmosphere of disconnectedness and distrust, it will be a hell of an effort to organise and to even create awareness.

    Thank you, Helen Kelly for writing this, I had NO IDEA about these planned changes by the government to this moment!

    • Darien Fenton 5.1

      xtasy : http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/6914849/Secret-changes-to-labour-rules The government added the part 6A provisions to their plans late last year before Kate Wilkinson was sacked. The only good news is that the government has been so slow to implement these changes when they were signed off by cabinet mid last year.

      • xtasy 5.1.1

        Darien, perhaps you and fellow MPs may front up to some of these media clowns out there a bit more often and more firmly, so they also get the message, that you said something about it, and that they better do some more reporting, as we get all kinds of drivel all the time, but nothing that really matters to most working and not working NZers.

        But thank you so much for pointing out that this has been in the making for some time.

        • Darien Fenton 5.1.1.1

          Xtasy : we work hard to try to get the media interested believe me and I always front up. This particular piece and accompanying other media work took weeks of effort, starting with getting the cabinet papers in the first place, questions in the house, written questions etc. I also broke the story about the changes to part 6A. What’s frustrating is knowing that it’s hardly hitting the conscienceness of working people about the horrific stuff coming our way.

          • ghostrider888 5.1.1.1.1

            you are a trooper Darien, despite what the factional analysts say; imho, the proof is in the putting (out).

            Edit: in fact, We are all in this together, (and if you follow The Standard, the future is NOT looking bright, though we might need shades).

            Yours Sincerely, not Eddie.

          • xtasy 5.1.1.1.2

            Thanks for letting us know, Darien, keep it up, sadly many working people, like also beneficiaries, are not informed, as the media has generally dropped in standards across the board and is largely in Nat friendly hands.

            Now the Na(t)zis have managed to pass this horrendous Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill through the 3rd Reading, it will late this year and in coming years be all “shock and horror” for many naive, ill informed beneficiaries, who have NO idea about what will be in store for them.

            SHOCKING state of affairs, really!

  6. xtasy 6

    I can say with some certainty, that beneficiaries will have the same kind of “awakening” as workers will have facing such changed labour laws, once the Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill will be law and implemented. There is so much lack of awareness and information around about all this out there, it is shocking!

  7. ghostrider888 7

    from my “breeze-block” tower-cell Helen; perception of a need to re-educate “working people” regarding expectations; expectations are enslaving folk; to re-quote Uturn, cut back, and “cut off the blood supply to the parasites”.

    Watched your every nuance on Q+A, fetching in grey, however, you are destined for great things, remain composed..

  8. Lionel 8

    where,s the Maori Party in all of this maori would be a disadvantagedalong with every other worker
    i agree with Lanthanide

  9. big bruv 9

    Seems like a great bit of legislation to me. Sensible policy and long overdue.

    Of course nobody should take a word that Kelly says at face value.

    [lprent: Please remember that Helen is an author here. That means you have severe limits on how far you can attack her on this site. Attack what she says. Do not attack her.

    BTW: Reminds me – did you ever pay up? Or are you still welching?
    Based on your previous performance I think that we’d have to treat your words with a wee bit of caution. ]

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Slavery is sensible, as is child labour. And getting rid of environmental responsibilities. In comparison, this legislation is soft assed pansy kneed shit.

      • rosy 9.1.1

        Slavery is not sensible. It costs the owner more than disposable labour, who they don’t have to house and feed. Child labour on the other hand, might be.

    • xtasy 9.2

      Helen Kelly has heaps more credentials than the dodgy bugger that is running this government and country into the ground at present! But I suppose you choose to differ, which would make clear, what we can think of your credentials.

    • Murray Olsen 9.3

      Funnily enough, big bruv sounds exactly like my older brother. Not an engineer by any chance, are you?

  10. Jenny 10

    Under the ECA strikes were only\ illegal during the term of a contract.

    This new law makes it illegal to strike even if you are out of contract.

    Except for some very narrow circumstances which are subject to the Employer, being willing to talk to you….

    ….All strikes will now be illegal.

    I wonder how the major unions will respond?

    I wonder how the Unite Union will respond? The Unite Union will be particularly vulnerable to this new law, as they have used the strike weapon as a major recruiting tool, many thousands of young workers joined them on the backs of a myriad of small but successful strikes organised in fast food restaurants.

    And last of all, I wonder how the CTU will respond?

    My guess is, not at all. Because that would mean breaking the anti strike laws that already exist.

    On the other side of the coin since all future strikes, from now on will be illegal, The CTU might as well get started now.

    If I was Helen Kelly I would call an immediate all up CTU affiliates meeting to see if there is stomach for such a strike.

    • xtasy 10.1

      “This new law makes it illegal to strike even if you are out of contract.”

      Maybe this raises human rights issues, or breaches international conventions NZ may have signed, I wonder!?

  11. Graeme Trask 11

    Thank you Helen. The current government is doing all it can and while it can to exploit workers rights and conditions. The sooner this government is rid of the better and Helen Kelly to be the next prime minister of NZ

  12. Murray Olsen 12

    We had the chance of a general strike in 1984, which would have put this neoliberal nonsense back a few years. Ken Douglas and Bill Andersen were dead against it, on the basis that at least we could talk to Labour. Not even necessarily that they’d listen, but we could talk to them.
    Now, in 2013, I still don’t see any other real answer. The problem is that the numbers in unions have gone right down and neoliberalism is the reigning delusion. I’m afraid I can’t see any other answers except for a long, slow, and difficult rebuilding of the working class movement. We have some natural allies in beneficiaries, Mana, the Greens, some of the Labour members, and maybe even some Winston First supporters. It won’t be easy, but not much that is worthwhile ever is.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      You need capital
      You need economic levers
      You need media levers
      You need leaders
      You need political operators

      Where are they all

      • xtasy 12.1.1

        Too many are too busy covering their own backsides, cushioning their seats, pretending to be doing something of relevance, keeping the lid on the disgruntled former supporters, paying us off with “well meaning” expressions of solidarity (words) and otherwise preparing for their secure retirement, while feathering their own nests.

        As for members of unions, and common workers, they are also too scared to rock the boat, they are themselves often divided, and the latter are often choosing to “protect” themselves by greasing up to bosses, hoping that will secure employment and their pay, so they can maintain their little slave lives while paying off the mortgages, paying the rent, putting a few morsels aside for Kiwi Saver.

        The RIGHT has sadly succeeded, with all their strategies and tricks, to DIVIDE and ensure their RULE!

    • xtasy 12.2

      Murray, in all honesty, do WORKERS expect SOLIDARITY from BENEFICIARIES, while too many (even the working poor) have fallen for DIVISION and truly SHAT ON BENEFICIARIES, when they struggled for maintaining meagre rights and protection???

      Where were the workers that supported the protests, or even us here on the Standard and in other places and forums, when beneficiaries were getting hammered?

      Where was the sympathy from the “middle class”?

      Where is the support and sympathy from any of those working NOW?

      Too late, the most hideous piece of legislation was passed in the House last night, supported by lackeys like Dunne. I know of people who wrote to the guy, to present the critical issues in question, to reconsider and withhold his vote to just ensure some corrections to protect the weakest. NO, he cast his vote in favour, and the voters of Ohariu have not to my knowledge lobbied him to show sympathy and consideration.

      NZ is DIVIDED, PEOPLE ARE AT EACH OTHER’S THROATS, RATHER THAN STAND TOGETHER!

  13. Kahukowhai 13

    The putting in of compulsory collective agreements was an ideological move in 2005. Remember:
    This was the policy of Labour in 2000 but they backed down in the face of opposition in the submissions. In 2005 they simply ignored the submissions outright to push it through regardless. You can’t deny it was a controversial move. I have never signed a union collective agreement and I never will. Myself and my friends would regard this as a push towards compulsory union membership and some of my friends who were forced to belong to unions would have strong views about their rights to freedom of association, which isn’t just what you define it as, the right to belong to a union, but also the right not to be forced to join a union.

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      In politics, ideology is everything.

      You may want to be a lone agent negotiating for yourself but you are one of the few.

      My suggestion since you are such a heroic worker – just find a work place or an employer which doesn’t use collective contracts. Maybe working as a collective team is not for you? It seems like life as an independent contractor beckons to you. Go for it. Don’t let the losers hold you back mate, you can o it all better by yourself.

      It’s your choice where you work after all, and you have freedom not to associate with work places you don’t want to associate with.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • 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
    9 hours 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
    12 hours 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
    12 hours 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
    14 hours 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
    17 hours 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
    21 hours 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
    24 hours 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    4 days 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
    5 days ago
  • Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents
    Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents Homeowners, builders and DIYers will soon have an easier time making basic home improvements as the Government scraps the need for consents for low-risk building work such as sleep-outs, sheds and carports – allowing the construction sector to fire back up quicker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Concern at introduction of national security legislation for Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says the New Zealand Government has reacted with concern at the introduction of legislation in China’s National People’s Congress relating to national security in Hong Kong.  “We have a strong interest in seeing confidence maintained in the ‘one country, two systems’ principle under which Hong ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Samoa Language Week theme is perfect for the post-COVID-19 journey
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, says the theme for the 2020 Samoa Language Week is a perfect fit for helping our Pacific communities cope with the unfolding COVID-19 crisis, and to prepare now for the journey ahead as New Zealand focuses on recovery plans and rebuilding New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Adult kakī/black stilt numbers soar
    A nearly 40-year programme to protect one of New Zealand’s most critically endangered birds is paying off, with a record number of adult kakī/black stilt recently recorded living in the wild, the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. “Thanks to the team effort involved in the Department of Conservation’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Waikato-Tainui settlement story launched on 25th anniversary of Treaty signing
    The story of the Waikato-Tainui Treaty process and its enduring impact on the community is being told with a five-part web story launched today on the 25th anniversary of settlement, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “I am grateful to Waikato-Tainui for allowing us to help capture ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Taita College to benefit from $32 million school redevelopment
    Taita College in the Hutt Valley will be redeveloped to upgrade its ageing classrooms and leaky roofs, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. “The work is long overdue and will make a lasting difference to the school for generations to come,” Chris Hipkins said. “Too many of our schools are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Redeployment for workers in hard-hit regions
    The Government is allocating $36.72 million to projects in regions hard hit economically by COVID-19 to keep people working, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Projects in Hawke’s Bay, Northland, Rotorua and Queenstown will be funded from the Government’s $100 million worker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • $35m to build financial resilience for New Zealanders
    A $35m boost to financial capability service providers funded by MSD will help New Zealanders manage their money better both day to day and through periods of financial difficulty, announced Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “It’s always been our position to increase support to key groups experiencing or at risk ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New District Court Judge appointed
    Dunedin barrister Melinda Broek has been appointed as a District Court Judge with Family Court jurisdiction to be based in Rotorua, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Broek has iwi affiliations to Ngai Tai. She commenced her employment in 1996 with Scholefield Cockroft Lloyd in Invercargill specialising in family and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $206 million investment in upgrades at Ohakea Air Force Base
    The Coalition Government has approved a business case for $206 million in upgrades to critical infrastructure at Royal New Zealand Air Force Base Ohakea, with the first phase starting later this year, Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. The investment will be made in three phases over five years, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Review of CAA organisational culture released
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today released the Ministry of Transport’s review of the organisational culture at the Civil Aviation Authority. Phil Twyford says all employees are entitled to a safe work environment. “I commissioned this independent review due to the concerns I had about the culture within the CAA, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Board appointed at Stats NZ
    Ensuring that Stats NZ’s direction and strategy best supports government policy decisions will be a key focus for a new Governance Advisory Board announced today by the Minister for Statistics, James Shaw. The new Governance Advisory Board will provide strategic advice to Stats NZ to ensure it is meeting New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Principal Environment Judge
    Environment Judge David Kirkpatrick of Auckland has been appointed as the Principal Environment Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  Judge Kirkpatrick was appointed an Environment Judge in February 2014. From December 2013 to July 2016 he was Chair of the Auckland Unitary Plan Independent Hearings Panel. Prior to appointment he ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Digital connectivity boost for urban marae
    A programme to connect marae around the country to the internet has received $1.4 million to expand to include urban marae in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Kris Faafoi and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. The funding for the Marae Connectivity Programme ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt increases assistance to drought-stricken Hawke’s Bay farmers
    The Government will provide $500,000 to the Hawke’s Bay Mayoral Drought Relief Fund to help farmers facing one of the worst droughts in living memory, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Yesterday afternoon I received a letter from Hawke's Bay's five local Government leaders asking me to contribute to the Fund. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Investment in New Zealand’s history
    Budget 2020 provides a major investment in New Zealand’s documentary heritage sector, with a commitment to leasing a new Archives Wellington facility and an increase in funding for Archives and National Library work. “Last year I released plans for a new Archives Wellington building – a purpose-built facility physically connected ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Driving prompt payments to small businesses
    Government Ministers are asking significant private enterprises to adopt prompt payment practices in line with the state sector, as a way to improve cashflow for small businesses. The Ministers of Finance, Small Business, Commerce and Consumer Affairs have written to more than 40 significant enterprises and banking industry representatives to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Rotorua tourist icon to be safeguarded
    Maori Arts and Crafts will continue to underpin the heart of the tourism sector says Minister for Maori Development Nanaia Mahuta.  “That’s why we are making a core investment of $7.6 million to Te Puia New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, over two years, as part of the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $14.7m for jobs training and education
    The Government is funding more pathways to jobs through training and education programmes in regional New Zealand to support the provinces’ recovery from the economic impacts of COVID-19, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Employment Minister Willie Jackson have announced. “New Zealand’s economic recovery will be largely driven by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago