E tū union news – May 2023

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Delegate Forums kick off around the country

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Just after Easter, our annual Delegate Forums started around the country – the first time we’ve been able to hold them face to face for more than three years!

Our Delegate Forums are open to all E tū delegates and are a chance to catch up on everything that’s been going on at E tū, especially our major campaigns.

This year, we’ve talked about things like Fair Pay Agreements for security guards and cleaners, pay equity for care and support workers, and a Just Transition for all members affected by changes in industry due to climate change and technology.

Are you interested in becoming a delegate? Check out our delegate page here!

From ‘stuff all’ to good stuff – your organising wins

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Stuff members who work as journalists have now seen the fruits of their hard strike mahi last year with a decent pay rise of 6.8% and the reintroduction of a stepped pay scale. It’s the first time in years journalists have gone on strike, and it all paid off!

McCallum Industries members working at a food manufacturing plant in Henderson, Auckland, got a $1.60 an hour pay boost and 7.2% on allowances in their most recent collective agreement signed in March.

Members at Cordis Hotel have won some great new clauses in their collective, including a new family violence clause and one that means new employees need to be shown their collective and how to join the union. All current members are now paid at the 2022/23 Living Wage rate as a minimum, backpaid to February.

A strike notice by Oji Fibre members in Penrose resulted their company filing a lockout notice but was successfully resolved with mediation and a good outcome for members with 6% in their next one-year collective agreement.

First FPAs for security guards and cleaners on the way

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In March and April, security guards and cleaners sent through thousands of signatures to start the ball rolling for their Fair Pay Agreements. News about our FPAs has also made it around the world!

After the Fair Pay Agreements law was passed in October 2022, E tū members campaigned for months, encouraging workers to sign a document saying they wanted to initiate to begin bargaining an FPA.

Each group needed to collect more than 1000 signatures from their fellow security guards and cleaners.

Now these have been sent through to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), the signatures will be checked and verified. Then the next stage of the process can begin – drawing up claims to take to the bargaining table!

What’s an FPA?

A Fair Pay Agreement is an agreement that is bargained by unions (representing workers) and employer representatives to set minimum standards across occupations or industries, for example, security or cleaning.

For workers, it means that no matter which company they work for, they’ll all have the same minimum pay, conditions, health and safety requirements, and whatever else we are able to negotiate.

Other unions have so far filed for an FPA for bus drivers and hospitality workers. But there’s also potential for FPAs to benefit many other occupations and industries in future.

Pay equity promise for care and support workers

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In April, pay equity meetings for E tū, PSA, and NZNO members kicked off around the country to update members about their pay equity claim, which will benefit all workers once it’s settled.

In July 2022, the unions filed a pay equity claim against 15 employers across the sector to assess whether the current pay rates for care and support workers are fair.

The claim compares their jobs with a job of similar responsibility and skill done by workers in male-dominated industries, as care and support workers have long been undervalued and underpaid.

The last pay equity claim, which was settled in 2017, led to historic pay rises of up to 50% which transformed the lives of our members.

Election 2023: Real change starts with us

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The election is coming around fast! We want to make sure issues for our members heard, and a big part of this is encouraging our members to vote.

This year we’ve prepared a simple pledge form for you and your whānau to commit to voting. Click here to take the pledge!

Welcoming new E tū members

To strengthen our union and create active leaders, E tū is running online welcome meetings for our new members around every six weeks.

On each call, we also have organisers, E tū leaders, and other members of the E tū team on hand to answer your questions and provide inspiration.

If you are new to E tū, or just want to learn more about your union, you’re more than welcome to join us at a new member meeting. You can also check out your new members page here.

WHEN: Wednesday 7 June
TIME: 10am-11am


WHEN: Wednesday 7 June
TIME: 7pm-8pm

Living Wage goes up to $26 per hour

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On 1 April, the new Living Wage rate of $26 was announced for 2023/24.

That’s an increase of almost 10%, which reflects the real cost of living increase for working families in recent years.

From 1 September 2023, any Living Wage Employer will need to pay the new increased rate if they want to stay accredited.

The rate increase followed a special rate review, which only happens every five years.

E tū cleaner Iunisi Fainga’anuku talked about the new rate on PMN. You can listen here.

Print this newsletter for your noticeboard

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We know not all our members communicate by email – so why not print this newsletter out for your union noticeboard?

  • Click on ‘View this email in your browser’ at the top of the email.
  • Once in the new screen, then right click and select ‘Print’.

We’ve also got some fresh new E tū noticeboard headers, so you can create a dedicated space for everything union. If you’d like some for your workspace, please contact your delegate or organiser.

Upcoming events

Unions Auckland May Day event

Come and hear speakers from unions around Auckland (including E tū’s very own Ines Mitgutsch) and live music to celebrate and recognise May Day this evening.

WHEN: Monday 1 May
Whammy Bar & Wine Cellar, 183 Karangahape Rd, Auckland
TIME: 7pm
COST: Optional koha, all proceeds go to the Living Wage Movement Aotearoa

Got news to share?

It’s always great to hear from our members and about any news in the community that might be helpful for others.

Write to us at communications@etu.nz if you have something you’d like to share.

E tū member discounts

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Save at least 10 cents per litre on your petrol – apply for your Kora card today!