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Employment Update – 7 September 2018

Home Insights Employment Update – 7 September 2018

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Contributed by: Kylie Dunn and Jamie Crosbie

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Published on: September 07, 2018

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Select Committee reports back on Amendment Bill

The Select Committee has reported back on proposed amendments to the Employment Relations Act 2000 today suggesting a number of amendments to the initial draft released earlier this year. None of these are fundamental or major changes to the draft released earlier this year.

The Select Committee's proposed amendments to the draft include:

  • clarifying that union delegates are entitled to be paid to represent employees;
  • clarification in relation to the process of unions asking employer's for more information;
  • providing that the union will be responsible for bearing the cost of providing information about the union to an employer to pass on to employees;
  • clarification regarding the process of employer's notifying employees that their details will be passed on to a union, as well as how employees notify employers of an intention to join a union;
  • providing that a collective agreement does not have to contain the exact rate of salary or wages, but could include minimum rates or a method of calculating rates instead;
  • defining small-to-medium enterprises as employers with fewer than 20 employees;
  • providing that the Minister will have the ability to amend categories of work protected from restructuring based on specific criteria including the frequency of restructuring in the sector and the bargaining power of the employees;
  • defining wages as including amounts payable for time, piece work or commission (whether wholly or in part); and
  • providing that any omission or error in providing notice of a strike under section 86A will not invalidate the strike.

The National party provided a strong minority view, stating that the party opposes the "ideological basis" of the amendments and believes that this will "destabilise the New Zealand industrial relations landscape".

A full copy of the Select Committee report can be found here. Please get in contact with a member of our team if you have any questions.

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