Union bullies exposed

With the Maritime Union now on strike for 21 days we are starting to hear of the stories of intimidation and fear perpetrated by the Union.

My union insiders have told me that even the hard cases were clearing out their lockers last night, gearing up to never return. They know they are beaten and this last action for the next three weeks is just for show. They have also told me quietly that had there ever been a secret ballot then many of these strikes would never have gone ahead.

It is ironic that secret ballots haven’t occurred because Carol Beaumont, one of the organisers of Save our Ports had this to say in opposition to the Secret Ballot law that is still before the house:

“The reason I point that out is that unions do have a good-faith obligation to their members. For argument’s sake, let us say that a union official was to force a member to take strike action. I do not believe that that is actually possible, and I have been a union organiser myself, but let us say that it is possible. In fact, that member has the absolute right under the Employment Relations Act to say that their union is not acting in good faith towards them, because it was forcing them to do something they did not want to do. The member would actually have a legal remedy for breach of good faith. That exists already”

Some of those union members should feel aggrieved. Their union has sold them down the line so that the senior unionist could get their rather large redundancy payouts. It could easily be argued that ignoring actual ballot numbers int he show of hands is an act of bad faith, they could easily argue that destroying their jobs instead of working constructively with the employer is an act of bad faith.

I am reliably told by several Maritime Union staff that had a secret ballot been held this week instead fo the sham ballot that more than 60% of the staff would have voted to abandon strike action.

Now Ports of Auckland CEO Tony Gibson has shared some of the horror stories of the bullying going on. On top of that the damage, the theft and destruction of facilities as the union bully boys left the premises. Make no mistake the resolve of the Port to stay open during this strike. The Union knows this, that is why their hard cases were clearing out their lockers. They have lost and so they will go down with the dirty and nasty tactics that are largely gone from our industrial landscape.

Labour of course continues to support the strikers, another email was sent out two days ago to those on labour’s email list. It heavily promotes the Save our Ports campaign and was sent out under Labour party logs and banners. So while David Shearer professes to be staying out of this battle the party is simply ignoring him.

Tony Gibson said “These repeated strikes only serve to make it difficult to set dates for further mediation, while placing unwarranted pressure on staff, families, customers and the supply chain,”

Compounding the problem of mediation is the fact that next week as the union pickets the port Garry Parsloe and the union bosses will be sunning themselves in Sydney. That will be yet another example of the bad faith the union has exhibited towards their members.

Ports of Auckland – Update to Stakeholders


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  • ConwayCaptain

    Having worked on ships with the old NZ Seamen’s Union now the MUNZ I can beleive what they have done.

    • Beenthere

      I used to work at that port several years ago, Those feedback comments in Tony Gibson’s letter very accurately describe how munz operated back then.

      • Frangi

         Yes, I too have worked at the port and still know people there and it is exactly as described in the letter.  I’ve had union delegates try to bully me and it’s very real. This isn’t a battle for casualisation, or to save the port, or to give security to families.  It’s a battle about control.  The union has been dictating for so long it’s long ago lost site of global phenomena like the worldwide recession and it’s impact on businesses.  It doesn’t understand anymore what other companies have had to do to stay afloat and how much they rely on the supply chain performing.  It has no care for the ports customers – so blinkered and oblivious is MUNZ that it sits like a slack jawed troll not knowing what to think when customer after customer elects to not put their import containers through the Auckland Port gateway.  After decades of sitting on the pigs back and raking in 1950’s conditions for its members and every negotiation year making further demands for more, MUNZ has finally bit the hand that fed it and now all its members face starvation.  Well done MUNZ you’ve finally imploded.

  • ConwayCaptain

    As has been commented on before it is very strange how there has been no “solidarity shown with the bruvvers” from other NZ Ports, their fraternal reltions across the ditch or the International Union of Longshoremen in the US.

    Mr Parsloe will be able to take a well deserved retirement after this on his MUNZ pension knowing he has come close to destroying the Union and the Port.  He will be able to join other illuminati in the Union Movement like Jack Dash, John Prescott (now Lord Prescott) and Arthur Scargill who have destroyed their members livelihoods

    • Gazzaw

      I had a wry smile about MUNZ using the slogan of ‘Save our Ports’ to promote their latest act of sabotage.  

      I wondered where Carol Beaumont would turn up after getting the arse at the last election. Still bludging a living off the workers I see but at least I don’t have to put up with her in Maungakiekie any longer. MUNZ & Beaumont deserve each other.

      • Bunswalla

        Yes Gaz, striking to save POA is a bit like fighting for peace, or fucking for virginity. Any victory (and let’s face it there’s only going to be one outcome from this, and it won’t be a win to MUNZ) would be pyrrhic in any case.

    • Terrafirma

      It’s difficult for members from other unions like the RMTU or other branches of MUNZ to understand how best to support MUNZ in Auckland.  The constantly changing reason for what the strike is about is too bamboozling.

      MUNZ latest propoganda using its members children on the picket line and dropping postcards of a MUNZ family into household letter boxes must be an idea that came from the hobbit hater.  She’s trying to get back onside with those of smaller stature.  Wonder how the MUNZ members like having their kids used as political levers??  Obviously the wharfies are not getting the sympathy they had hoped for, so now they’re trying to use their children to get support – what next?  their dogs??  Interesting choice with the postcard too  – the guy on the front was on ACC for over two years from a non work related injury and the port has really tried to look after him but I guess he doesn’t value that.  Try being in the public sector mate! 

  • rouppe

    It would seem then that any future contract ought to ensure that union members’ mess-room, sky, BBQ and recreational choices be separate from non-union, and completely paid for from union reserves.

    Maybe if Ports of Auckland are feeling generous, they may put an onld container or two somewhere to start them off…


    Wankers, cowards,and losers seems words that fit this lot of timewasters.As for Labour supporting these people.Good on you for showing your true colours.

  • Doug_S

    SCOOP…5145 people have signed the “save our port” petition”…LMFAO

    • Jellyfish

      Yes and considering Auckland now has 1.5 million people and only 5000 odd supporters, it’s clear that munz has never done the math!

    • Hoha

      5145 = Family and close friends

  • Owl

    This is going to down as one of the worst PR jobs in Union history. The biggest reason for the failure is quite simply this – if you are going to cause a revolution you have to have the public support. Second thing is that your leader/s have to demonstrate that they a eating from the same bowl as the front line members. Finally you actually have to have a good reason to go on strike. The tough Progressive strikes on the supermarkets was simple – Australian owners – pay the same to your NZ counter-parts – it was a story with legs and the public could understand it.

    1.MUNZ has NO PUBLIC SUPPORT and its clear that the leaders of the councils and Govt and Labour don’t want to get involved. Public support is measured in 1,000 or even 10.000’s not a few hundred

    2. It is very clear the leaders are operating for a different reason – who knows

    3. The ratepayers of Auckland are actually your bosses. The people of NZ are the owners therefore through the power of the vote there will be alot of people who will be voted out of this council.

    Finally if the Union PR people had really done their research there was one clear sign from the last general election that should of made them sit up. The Labour and Unions put all their weight behind Andrew Little to get elected. That failed – that on its own should have sent a message to Unions that they no longer have public support. So when considering a major strike like the POAL – you need to know the publics mood.

    Ego’s in front of common sense


    • Light

       This is excellent owl.

  • Peter

    Are you sure of the authenticity of that letter? It looks odd to me. Can their WP be that bad? It looks as if it was typed on a typewriter. I have never seen a letter prepared on a pc and printed on good printers come out like this. Just asking! I don’t have any comment on the contents.

    • Beenthere

      It looks as if it’s been scanned at some point.

    • Biker

      Yes, this is the real thing, although it was probably faxed to someone as a leak and the handwritten letters on it are just someone trying to make it legible.  I know it’s real as I know someone at the port who was at work today and had to help with the cleaning up of all the urine that the MUNZ workers pissed all over the BBQ’s.

      It’s their best offer yet – urine.  The other stuff they were offering at the negotiation table was shit.

    • Anonymous

      Here’s a copy from the ports website: http://www.poal.co.nz/shipping_cargo/downloads/20120221_IAU_UnionMisinformation.pdf looks like the file’s been corrupted somewhat between the port releasing it and it ending up on this blog. definitely authentic though

  • thor42

    Parsloe off sunning himself is a very bad look. So much for “solidarity”. 

    • Frangi

       Let’s not forget having a few beverages while he’s at it.

    • Jellyfish

      Don’t forget Thor that he is also getting paid every week that his members are striking (not that they are). Another excellent show of solidarity, not to mention the big head honcho delegate within the membership has sold out of solidarity by looking for employment in Australia. Flies in the face of securing jobs when your top delegate is also doing his best to get a fat redundancy cheque to support his move over to that racist country. He should fit in well since munz and their beliefs are so heavily ingrained in racist and sexist ideology!

  • Light

    Have you seen the daily Yahoo Poll today?

    News Poll

    What do you think of the Ports of Auckland strike?

    They have a right to protest for fairer work conditions (3940)27%They should stop complaining (9006)61%I don’t know (514)4%I don’t care (1139)8%

  • jay cee

    saw helen kelly and co on the news. was it a piss take of the nats that their tee shirts were blue.
    freudian slip with word “piss”, if what was reported was true then i have lost some respect for them.

    • Guest

      Trying to keep anonymous here jay cee but I work at the ports and can categorically state that they urinated on the BBQs. I was one of many who had to clean it up!

  • Euan Rt

    Down at Mikano for 50th golden wedding tonight. My brother in law who is not one for holding back, leant out the window of the car as we drove off and abused these guys in their tent with a labour party car along side! Told them to get a real job and some choice words that I wouldn’t condone. Had them all rarked up and chasing the car. Fortunately the lights turned green in time!

  • ConwayCaptain

    Maersk have put a STRIKE SURCHARGE on all cargo through POAL until the port returns to normal.

    I bet that people are now looking at building a port at Marsden Point.  Deep Water, plenty of land and cheap at the moment, run the trains straight on to the wharf.  Fdder service by sea to the S Island and Wellington.

  • Global Conscience

    The fat leading the blind on the condition of anonymity. Only rats and theives thrive on staying in the dark, and unnamed.

    • Euan Rt

      and your name is?