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EMPLOYMENT RELATIONS AMENDMENT BILL – Update!!

Further to my blog in September 2018, the Employment Relations Amendment Bill has now been passed by Parliament. The Act was passed by Parliament on 5th Dec 2018 with some changes taking place from 12th December 2018 and some taking place from 6th May 2019.

As per Employment NZ (https://www.employment.govt.nz/about/employment-law/employment-relations-amendment-bill-2018) , please see a list of changes to be aware of:

From 12th December 2018:

· Union representatives can now enter workplaces without consent

· Pay deductions can no longer be made for partial strikes

· Businesses must now enter into bargaining for multi-employer collective agreements

· Employees will have extended protections against discrimination on the basis of their union membership status

· If requested by the employee, reinstatement will be the first course of action considered by the ERA (Employment Relations Authority)

· Earlier initiation timeframes have been restored for unions in collective bargaining

· New categories of employees may apply to receive the protections afforded to “vulnerable employees”

You will observe that the majority of the above are relevant to collective or unionised workforces.

From 6th May 2019:

· The right to set rest and meal breaks will be restored

· 90-day trial periods will be restricted to businesses with less than 20 employees

· Employees in specified “vulnerable industries” will be able to transfer on their current terms and conditions in their employment agreement if their work is restructured

· The duty to conclude bargaining will be restored

· The 30-day rule will be restored (Related to new employees and consistency with relevant collective agreement)

· Pay rates will need to be included in collective agreements

· Employers will need to provide new employees with an approved active choice form within the first ten days

· Employers will need to allow for reasonable paid time for union delegates to undertake their union activities

· Employers will need to pass on information about the role and function of unions to prospective employees

CONTACT & NEXT STEPS:

If you would like further information on any of the above let me know and I can provide more detail.

DYLAN ADAMS @ THE HR GUY

dylan@thehrguy.nz

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