News and Views

Employment Bill closing

BusinessNZ urges businesses to make a submission on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill before the closing date of Good Friday 2018.

The Bill introduces changes to the Employment Relations Act to support collective bargaining and the role of unions in the workplace.

BusinessNZ Chief Executive Kirk Hope says the proposed changes have the potential to reduce businesses’ flexibility and productivity, and firms should have their say on the optimal employment relations settings for their business.

“Many successful features of our current employment relations framework have come about through hard-won changes to employment law over a period of years.

“Business will not want to lose settings that support high-performing businesses and contribute to economic growth.

“A number of provisions in the Amendment Bill require close scrutiny to ensure they do not harm the growth prospects of businesses and communities.”

He said provisions that required scrutiny included:

  • Restricting the 90-day trial period to businesses with fewer than 20 employees
  • Requiring all staff to get meal and rest breaks at statutory times
  • Compulsion on employers to take part in multi-employer collective bargaining
  • Compulsion on employers to reach agreement on a collective agreement regardless of bargaining terms
  • Allowing union access to the workplace without prior employer consent

Source: BusinessNZ

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