Clayton Mitchell MP, Spokesperson for Employment
The Employment Relations Amendment Bill was passed in Parliament today by the Coalition Government.
This Bill has been vastly improved since its introduction through constructive internal discussion and in-depth consideration of public submissions.
“New Zealand First believes that the Bill strikes a good balance between the interests of workers and employers,” said New Zealand First Employment Spokesperson Clayton Mitchell.
“This legislation looks out for small and regional businesses. New Zealand First has always advocated for these groups and they were at the forefront of our minds throughout the discussions.
“We are particularly pleased that we secured the 90 day trial for small businesses with under 20 employees. Removing the trial period would have been a blow for them,” said Mr Mitchell.
Other significant modifications to the Bill include the ability for businesses to choose not to opt in to a Multi-Employer Collective Agreement (MECA), which will prevent the cost structures of big cities from being imposed on businesses in the regions. As well as this important amendment, the Bill now requires consent from an employer for union delegates to access a workplace, in circumstances where union members are not covered by, or bargaining for, a collective agreement.
“This Bill reflects an industrial relations environment based on fairness between parties,” said Mr Mitchell.