Thursday, 5th May, 2022
The Government is introducing its Fair Pay legislation. The New Zealand Chambers are very concerned and have written the following open letter to the Minister, Michael Wood. We've included it below for your information.
Dear Minister Wood,
The New Zealand Chambers of Commerce represent more than 20,000 small and medium businesses across the country. They are uniting in their vocal opposition to your Government’s plan to introduce “Fair Pay Agreements”.
FPAs are a misnomer. They are inherently unfair to both employers and workers and signal an unnecessary and unwanted return to the past.
Our members cannot support this Bill which will empower a small percentage of a sector group to dictate the pay and conditions of the majority to the detriment of employers and workers.
We all accept the aspirations to do better for workers and to implement overdue reform in some sectors, but there are better ways, more acutely tuned to market realities, to reward and grow a skilled workforce that will take New Zealand into the future.
One size does not fit all and fails to recognise and reward productivity, skills and fit for the individual enterprise’s size, structure, location and resources.
Good employers are innovative in creating workplaces where wellbeing and fairness underpin their way of operating and are creating prosperous futures that value skills, adaptability, love of learning and productivity, beyond an hourly wage rate.
We have moved a long way from compulsory and combative them-and-us unions versus employers.
We, as business owners and leaders, will not be silent. We will fight for a better way to lift productivity, pay for excellence and innovation and grow skills to sustain our economy.
Compulsory Fair Pay Agreements are not the way to achieve the changes we need.
We would welcome working as partners with Government in finding the way forward to achieve a resilient business environment with a diverse, skilled, and productive workforce that is valued for the individual contribution they make.