The Council of Trade Unions (CTU) and affiliated public service unions, met with the Minister for the Public Service, Chris Hipkins, this afternoon to discuss the pay expectations of those working in New Zealand’s public sector.
CTU President, Richard Wagstaff (pictured) said it was a good discussion.
“It was a constructive meeting. We made it crystal clear how unhappy and angry union members are feeling in response to the policy announcement,” said Mr Wagstaff.
“There was absolute agreement that bargaining will be in good faith without pre-determined outcomes. It was also agreed that there is scope to discuss cost of living increases in negotiations for all union members covered by collectives, with higher increases for low paid workers and that there is no pay freeze.”
The Minister said guidance for state sector employers would be reviewed next year.
“We were reassured to hear that the Minister intends to accelerate pay equity and pay parity processes to settlement, positively impacting on the gender and ethnic pay imbalance. And the Minister also agreed that addressing wellbeing and workload issues are a priority,” said Mr Wagstaff.
“We agreed that because bargaining is already underway and more bargaining will occurring in the coming weeks, that it is important to make sure todays discussion will be explained to those at the negotiation tables as soon as possible.”
Mr Wagstaff said the channels of communication were open, and the CTU has agreed to have further discussions with the Minister.