Workers in, Spotless out!
Its great news that the Employment Court has ruled that the lockout imposed by Spotless Services is illegal.
The company refuses to offer the same terms and conditions as the District Health Boards and three other contract companies. If lower wages and conditions are the only 'point of difference' Spotless can offer, then perhaps they should leave the industry.
The key reason Spotless do not want to join the collective agreement, despite being given additional funding by the Government for this purpose, is they want to undercut so they can keep more of their profits to themselves.
In a crude attempt at economic bullying, Spotless locked out 800 hospital cleaners and service staff, after their staff exercised their right to issue strike notices, after negotiations reached a Spotless imposed impasse. This right to strike has now been upheld by the Employment Court.
A big cheer for the Service and Food Workers Union!
The workers are now likely to get paid for the 9 days they were locked out of their jobs by their employer. But the workers are not likely to get this money any time soon, as it will take time to be sorted through the courts. It is important that New Zealanders continue to support the cause. For the low paid, 9 days without pay leads to greater financial difficulty, as these workers are unlikely to have any savings, and are likely to be carrying greater levels of comparative debt. Many may still have their cars repossessed or be kicked out of their homes by unsympathetic landlords.
So despite the end of the lockout, many workers will continue to experience financial difficulty. Donations are still very much required!