Thursday, 20 November 2008

If you go down to the city tomorrow

You might get a bit of a surprise (in Auckland anyway).

National Distribution Union members who work at Farmers stores in Auckland have called a stopwork meeting and intend to meet at 11.30am at QE2 Square, Downtown.

It's not often retail workers, who are predominantly women, take such a step. These workers have been riled by a measly 20c wage increase offer by their bosses. They'd much rather have a $15 minimum wage thanks very much.

So if you're in Queen St tomorrow around lunch time and you see a bunch of loud and proud union women, and men, protesting for fair pay please consider offering them your support.

8 comments:

Brett Dale said...

I'm not sure what to make of this. When you apply for a job and get it, you should know the wage before you sign a contract, I dont think they have a legal leg to stand on.

Anna said...

I doubt many of these women have the choice of telling their boss to shove it and getting something better. Besides, I don't think it should be an employer's prerogagive to pay a worker less than she can actually live on.

Anonymous said...

Brett, and as a worker you have the right to try and negotiate something better, right? katy

Brett Dale said...

Yes, as a worker you can negotiate with your employer for a pay raise, hopefully you have proven that you deserve a raise and you have been there for a certain time period,

Tui said...

Brett: "union." Do you know what it is? Because your posts seem to be criticising the whole concept of collective action. I'm not sure that's constructive in this arena.

Brett Dale said...

Since when is free speech not constructive?

Im saying, if you start a job and have read your contract, you have every right to try and negotiate your contract once you have been employed for a certain period of time, but not straight away.

Julie said...

The Standard has more on the protest, apparently it's being called the Skinny Santa Parade!

@ Brett, workers have a right to renegotiate their collective agreement. In fact under law a collective agreement has to be renegotiated at least every 3 years. They also have the right to take collective action to support their claims in said negotiations. In this case it looks as if they are using access to the paid union meeting provisions under the law. So they have lots of legal legs firmly holding up today's activity.

Hugh said...

Yes, as a worker you can negotiate with your employer for a pay raise, hopefully you have proven that you deserve a raise and you have been there for a certain time period,

And the moment you get together with other workers to do this jointly, this stops being a natural exercise and becomes a massive threat to economic productivity, if not democracy, correct?