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Regulate "wild west" labour hire industry – union

Date of Release: 
Wednesday, November 2, 2016

A union representing approximately 2000 labour hire workers in the logistics industry is calling on the Government to urgently introduce a licensing system in an effort to regulate the “wild west” industry. 

The call for a licensing system comes after NewsHub revealed that Work and Income New Zealand has, according to one person, “coerced” unemployed workers to sign unlawful employment contracts with labour hire firms.

“The industry is flooded with employment agreements that don’t comply with New Zealand law,” said FIRST Union’s Transport Logistics and Manufacturing Secretary Jared Abbott.

“It’s systemic.”

Licensing for labour-hire operators has recently been introduced in Victoria and South Australia following similar concerns raised across the ditch.

“Working people who are on temporary contracts are treated like second-class citizens. In our work we’re coming across more and more labour hire companies that aren’t paying holiday pay, that refuse to guarantee minimum hours, and that treat permanent workers like casuals.”

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