Why Friday’s strike at IDEA is going ahead
Last Friday, we held our eighth day of bargaining with IDEA. The good news is management didn’t walk out like they did last time and we were able to present them with nearly 700 personalised messages from members (the ‘wanted’ posters) to go the Board. Since neither the Board nor CEO Ralph Jones agreed to come to the meeting, we have provided copies for them to read. The bad news is they are still insisting on being able to force staff to move between services and facilities and slash health and safety rights.
As a result, we have started legal proceedings in the Employment Relations Authority to seek a formal facilitation hearing. This is a legal process that can test the employer position but to be successful in our application, Friday’s 8.30 – 9.30 strike must go ahead.
Your strike action is a critical part of our application. We’ve also said IDEA has seriously undermined the bargaining by making false statements about members (the letters from Ralph Jones which you may have seen).
It’s good to remember that the vote for action as over was overwhelmingly endorsed and that further strikes are planned for an hour from 8.30 on Friday 7th with a 12-hour strike on the weekend of the 16th and a 24-hour strike on the following weekend – if needed.
Taking a one-hour strike this and next Friday is your legal right and makes our application to the Authority all the more likely to succeed. It also shows you are serious about protecting your current rights. Members who don’t take part risk undermining that process.
Members are also reminded of the union negotiated equal pay rise due on 1 July with increase of 80 cents to $1 an hour. Taking action does not affect that increase.
Remember, IDEA’s attempts to your current slash health and safety rights and force so called ‘flexibility’ cannot be imposed on any member without your consent, so Friday’s action shows we are serious.
This week, 50,0000 teachers took nationwide action in support of their workplace rights, so we are in good company!
For more information contact E tū Union support on 0800 1 UNION.