In 1991 Jim Bolger passed the Employment Contracts Act, that act gave us workplace freedom, freedom to choose to not belong to a union.
Prior to that act of freedom, perhaps the last act of freedom passed by a National government we all had to belong to unions. Those were the same unions who interfered with our holidays with strikes, the same unions who halted a bridge being built at Onehunga for literally years and the same unions who mired the economy in the dogma of class battles.
When that act was passed freedom returned to the work place and outside of the state sector Kiwi workers embraced freedom. Unions now only represent under 10% of the workforce outside of the state sector.
The new CTU boss is upset by the level of union participation.
The Council of Trade Unions says the small percentage of workers on collective bargaining agreements is a poor reflection on the country’s labour record.
An International Labour Organisation study shows that about 15 percent of workers in New Zealand have collective agreements, compared to nearly 100 percent in Austria and France.
The study shows the number of New Zealand workers on collective bargaining agreements is less than in Albania, Russia and Bulgaria, and on a par with the United States. Read more »