Police Officers vs Wharfies

Yesterday I looked at the pay differential between Teachers and the lazy, overpaid wharfies. Some pointed out that wharfies have extremely dangerous jobs and hence the larger pay. They clearly haven’t taught year one in a South Auckland primary school let alone Year 10. However since danger is now the bench mark you couldn’t really get a more dangerous job than as a Police Officer.

CareersNZ tells me that Police pay rates are:

Pay varies, but during training police officer recruits earn $32,619 a year (total package $36,149). New graduates from Police College earn $47,600 a year, plus other benefits (total package $53,305). Salaries increase over time and police in higher ranks, such as sergeants, earn more than this.
According to the 2006 Census, police officers earned an average of $55,900 a year and worked an average of 43 hours per week. This includes full and part-time workers.

For that amount of pay they too also work rosters and are on call pretty their entire working lives. For the privilege of $55,900 per annum they get assaulted, stabbed, shot at, and sometimes run over and killed.

Wharfies on the other hand get full medical insurance benefits for their entire family, $91,000 per annum and only have to work 28 hours in every 40 hours rostered. They get to drive cranes and trucks and forklifts and hoists…but no one shoots at them, no one stabs them, no one bites them, no one bashes them for tuning up to sort  a domestic. There really is no comparison is there.

The people we rely on to protect us the most earn about half what a wharfie earns, I don’t think that is acceptable do you?

Who should be paid more

  • Police Officers who serve and protect (96%, 522 Votes)
  • Wharfies (4%, 19 Votes)

Total Voters: 541

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  • ConwayCaptain

    Having worked for 27 years on ships beinga wharfie can be dangerouse when working conventional cargoes.  Long steel for instance or logs and there have been instances in NZ where people have been killed.  I would point out that most of these have been people with little or no experience on the wharf and when working cargo you keep vigilent by using eyes and ears.

    • Gazzaw

      Fair comment Captain but in most industries there are fatalities or serious accidents – truck drivers, farming, aviation, railway workers etc.

      As far as the comparisons with the police are concerned I think that we need to take into account the trauma situation for the cops’ families too. A few years back a female colleague of mine whose husband is a cop had to be relocated with their two young kids at a moments notice due to serious threats on their lives by gang members & organised crime. 

    • Karl Laird

      There have been instances where people have been killed by sitting still for too long on aircraft – you don’t get paid $91k for it.

    • Willsomers101

      3 people killed last  15 months on Tauranga wharves
      http://www.bayofplentytimes.co.nz/news/one-dead-after-port-tauranga-accident/1068220/

      How many police killed in Tauranga last 24 years ?

  • John Q Public

    How many wharfies have been killed in the line of duty?

    • Politically Unstable

      There have been people who work on the wharf killed. I recall a couple of fatalities involved with log loading at Tauranga. Also I recall in last few years 3 or 4 who have been run over by forklifts again at POT. These have been marshalling employess as opposed to crane operators. But I presume the marshalling at POAL is also done with unionised labour. But to rate jobs on this basis is not a real indication. All the risks at the Port can be avoided if people follow saftey procedures. But the union will tell you that when we try to increase productivity we are putting the staff at risk as they have to rush. but I have watched wharfies show complete disregard for safety procedures and then in meetings complain that the employer does not care about safety – go figure

    • Don

      My great-grandfather was.  You ignorant prick.

      Killed by cargo falling from a net.

      Sorry Cam, but these bullshit throw-away lines upset me.

      And, just for balance, I’m self employed in IT.

    • Willsomers101

      Thats what it means , the wharfies have been killed on the job.   Normally a sudden and horrible death
      There was a police Sargent who died recently with a heart attack after a fitness test. Thats doesnt count.

  • Spiker

    Theres a list somewhere of most dangerous occupations, I wonder where wharfies come on that?

  • Anonymous

    The salaries should be swapped. Police should be on wharfie salaries and vice versa. That’d give Parsloe ulcers.

  • @gavinb

    This series of comparisons is fatuous, the market price for any service is what people agree to provide and pay for it. Risk to life, comfort, productivity, skill levels etc are all things parties bring to the bargain. Ultimately the price isn’t a virtue scorecard of those employed but simple supply and demand statement. Union attempts to monopolise labour supply,  to restrict supply and as with all monopolies this results in a higher price and inferior service.

  • Anonymous

    NZR rail unions were always trying to screw more pay when new technologies were introduced.  For example they demanded more pay for drivers when the (then) new local trains were introduced in Wellington in the 1980’s on the grounds that they were more complex to drive. A mediator held that they were easier to drive than the old 1940’s ones (some of which are still running).

  • Agent BallSack

    My sister is a police officer in Porirua, and whenever you hear any sort of stuff go down (the cop who got killed trying to deploy road spikes to stop a drug fucked loser), your instant reaction is to pick up the phone and call. Its not easy on cops or their families when that sort of thing happens and I wouldn’t take on that responsibility for any amount of money. Its a good thing most cops want to serve and do some type of civic duty or we wouldn’t have anyone at all who would be prepared to do the job.

    • EX Navy Greg

      very good point Agent

  • Agent BallSack

    As an aside I think the most dangerous jobs in NZ are in the building sector from memory, when I used to work pumping concrete on building sites in Wellington they were losing approximately 1 person per month.

  • poorman

    I have always thought that the Police deserve as much money as they want. Much more then warfies anyway.
    It’s a crap job that I wouldn’t want to do, but I really want them there when I need them.
     
    I also throw nuirses into the mix. Three years of training to wipe my arse when I get old? Theres no amount of money that would make me want to do that.

  • Petal


    The people we rely on to protect us the most earn about half what a wharfie earns, I don’t think that is acceptable do you? ”

    Cactus Kate just warms a seat and pushes paper all day and gets paid how much?

    (My point is that your articles are built on a faulty premise)

    • Agent BallSack

      How many years did Kate study at university?

    • Super Guest

      Cactus Kate has a series of skills. As do police officers. And warfies…can operate a crane…which anyone can do. I’d like to see one of the union hacks protesting make it through Kate’s job, but that’d require better than a 5th form reading age.

    • Petal

      You people really don’t get sarcasm do you?

  • cornershop…not

    Cameron …..now I get it….WHARFIES ARE THE 1% that occupiers should be whinging about!!
    Cops need to earn way more than 100k and way more than wharfies…

  • Steve and Monique.

    $91 for 20 something hrs,and $50 something for being a Police officer.Know who I will call,when someone starts shooting.Hope they bring there Fluro vests and hard hats,and some of there union mates.About time this $90k pay rate was sorted,and they worked a 40+ hour week like the rest of us.

    • Steve and Monique.

      forgot to add k to above pay rates,sorry my bad

  • sick of BS

    FFS – The pay and conditions the wharfies have now are what they negotiated in the past – now they are trying to keep them.

    The rates people keep spouting are not 100% correct. Most of them work more hours than 40per week.

    Not defending them as I see they need to change work practices but frankly I am sick of CEOs getting huge pay packets and pay rises – their payrises should be linked to the average pay increase for their employees. The CEOs max pay rate should be linked to the lowest hourly rate – best way to see the lowest paid get a payrise.

    Would be nice to see a breakdown of the payrates for the workers as well as the managers – might make some interesting reading.

  • Dad4justice

    i remember working on a dock that the mob run.

  • Dad4justice

    i remember a cop bashing me with a metal bar.

    • James

      That would explain a lot…..

  • Jamo

    Seeing that the MUNZ are taking heart in the odd car horn toot from Joe Moron, perhaps it should be known that flashing your lights at the picket tells them the opposite that they are oxygen theives.

  • Kate

    My colleague’s husband died
    on the wharfies in Auckland leaving her and her two children. She is a
    hard working solo Mum now of many years. Working on the docks is
    definitatly dangerous or even the police
    potentially (even though I don’t know that stats). Higher pay and a good
    life insurance payout should definately go with jobs that have
    associated risks, police work, dock work or whatever. It is important to look at how long you can do in a job, working on the docks will probably be a lot shorter ‘career’ than the Police. As police move up from the front line and up the ranks, they can earn more too, probaly a lot more than wharfies, as the learn and get experience. I am sure wharfies don’t have the same career options and many will move from unskilled job to uinskilled job until their back break or their bodies wear out.

  • Lesley

    Dangerous is when as a police officer in your first week on the beat in AKLD City, you go to a domestic during the day and are confronted by a knife wielding lowlife who holds a knife to your throat.

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