Union: Hire companies exploiting workers

  • 26/10/2015
Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse
Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse

Temporary workers are being exploited by labour hire companies and the Government needs to investigate, a union says.

The FIRST Union has called on the Government to audit the labour hire industry, saying it had received "alarming reports of employment law breaches", including workers being not paid sick leave or holiday rates.

The union's transport and logistics secretary, Karl Andersen, said those were some of the few rights temporary workers had.

"We'll be filing a claim against a labour hire company soon and we're calling on the Government to step up and conduct an industry-wide audit," he said.

Labour hire was a common practice in some industries, but workers were often afraid to complain because they would not be given work, he said.

The Labour Party backed the call for an investigation.

Labour relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway said communication was needed between the Government and unions over the matter.

"While breaches can be challenged through costly court processes, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Woodhouse should at least sit down with the union to discuss its concerns," he said.

NZN

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