Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A victory for worker's rights

The Affco dispute has finally been settled, with the union retaining collective bargaining rights, employment security, and their wages. Given that the Talley brothers' goal was explicitly to crush the union and remove those provisions, this can only be seen as a victory for worker's rights. At the same time, these workers were locked out for twelve weeks in an effort to rob them of basic employment protections: the right to belong to a union, the right to set working hours, and the right to a safe workplace. That should never have happened.

Meanwhile, it seems that the Iwi Leadership Group played a big role in forcing Affco to a settlement. This is good to see. Approximately 75% of union members at Affco are Maori, and its great to see iwi standing up for their members like this.