80% 'starting out' wage on the way

'New' government seen pushing through further labour market deregulation, opening ACC to competition.

Further labour market deregulation will be among the 'new' government's policy priorities, according to a Chapman Tripp report released this afternoon.

Based on its manifesto, and National's first-term track record, the law shop expects the new government to:

  • remove the requirement to conclude collective contract negotiations
  • remove the requirement that non-union members are employed under a collective agreement for the first 30 days
  • allow employers to opt out of negotiations for a multi-employer collective employment contract
  • allow employers to respond to partial strikes or other low-level industrial action with partial pay cuts
  • extend flexible working arrangements (removing the 6-month rule before an employee can request a flexible working arrangement, removing the limits on the number of requests an employee can make in a 12-month period, extending the right to make a request to all employees, removing the requirement to invoke a formal process), and
  • introduce a “Starting-Out Wage” set at 80% of the minimum wage for youth workers.

National has also said that it will review constructive dismissal so that it is less available as “an allegation of last resort," Chapman Tripp notes.

In terms of ACC, the incoming government is expected to:

  • open the workplace account to private insurance
  • expand the Accredited Employers Programme and
  • “Explore” opening the Motor Vehicles and Earners’ Accounts to competition. ​

Chapman Tripp notes the employment law changes "Will raise a number of difficult issues for the Maori Party.​"

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