Proposed changes to labour laws will hurt Pacific workers

Plans by the Government to change employment laws is a further attack on vulnerable workers, especially Pacific and other workers on the shop floor who have English as a second language, Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio, says.

“The Government and its business supporters are lauding these legislative changes as good for greater flexibility and freedoms in the workplace.

“In reality the proposal gives more power to employers, while at the same time it removes the good faith requirement around collective bargaining.

“Once again this government is demonstrating just how short sighted it is, with these changes likely to result in a culture of fear and uncertainty in the workplace.

“Workers on the factory floor, especially those with English as a second language – already facing limited job choices because of our high unemployment rate – will be open to more exploitation by unscrupulous employers,

“I’m told that even now we have some employers who fail to inform workers when the 90 day probation period is over.

“These latest changes will only provide more uncertainty for workers, and Labour is totally opposed to them,” said Su’a William Sio

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