Yesterday, we got to witness history being made. Fair Pay Agreements are now a reality for working Kiwis. This was a demonstration of what we can achieve when we work together – changing Aotearoa New Zealand for the better.
A large group of workers, union members and leaders came together at Parliament to watch the Bill be passed into law. In typical union fashion, we got several warnings for being rowdy and passionate in the gallery.
Working people were centred in the stories told by Labour and Green MPs during the reading. We heard the real-life impact of New Zealand’s deregulated labour market, and how this affected families and communities across the motu.
Today, that narrative can shift. It will shift back towards supporting low-paid workers, and ensuring people in particular industries have a floor that they cannot fall below.
Many MPs also described the Bill as a win for all employers who want to do right by their staff. FPA would end the race to the bottom for decent employers, who will no longer be undercut by other businesses who pay their employees less.
Reminds us of this great video!
After the speeches, and the superb political theatre, the ayes had it. Fair Pay Agreements were law.
Every working person in the gallery stood up to sing Tūtira Mai Ngā Iwi. MPs joined us for the waiata and tears flowed freely as the Parliament proceedings wrapped up.
To celebrate, unionists and MPs alike converged upon PSA for kai and bubbles. We shared cake and stories, and listened to the speeches of working people, who outlined the impact that FPAs would have on their life.
Or, if you want to hit the best part, the moment where the bill passed, watch it here:
After the passing of the bill, there was an event hosted by NZCTU at PSA House…it wouldn’t be a celebration without cake right?
Over the course of last night and today, there has been plenty of media coverage and debate.
Here’s links to some of the media coverage:
- One News
- RNZ talked with Richard Wagstaff, NZCTU President, and Kirk Hope, from BusinessNZ
- Stuff updated their “FPA Cheat sheet” after the third reading
Now the real work starts. Without question, there is going to be some hard conversations coming up over the next few months. What happens now is the start of initiation for FPAs. Initiation is where a industry or sector gets together 1,000 signatures, or 10% of the workforce, whichever is lower, to begin the process.
So if you’re a cleaner, a bus driver, work in hospo, are a security guard, work at an early childcare centre or a supermarket, it’s time to sign up and get onboard the FPA ride.
Here’s a portal for you to sign up: https://www.makeworkfair.nz/fpas_in_your_industry
And please remember to share this with your friends.
Together, we are now a lot stronger!
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