In response to the Mood of the Boardroom earlier this week, E tū is proud to announce a new election tradition – Mood of the Smoko Room.
The E tū National Executive has met in Auckland this week. This is the governing body of our union, comprising democratically-elected representatives from across our eight industries.
They were asked how they feel about the election and the results were unequivocal: working people want a change of Government. 100% of these workplace representatives support a change of Government, with 0% supporting the status quo.
Jacinda Ardern topped the leadership ratings with the group, with an impressive 4.67 average rating out of 5, compared to Bill English’s 0.8 – a dramatic and devastating result for the Prime Minister who hopes to win workers’ votes by talking up his tax cut plan.
By far the most important issues for workers were jobs and wages, followed by housing and health.
E tū President and electrical technician Don Pryde says these kinds of results are to be expected as the current Government has left workers behind for so long.
“Job security is a huge issue, and out of control labour hire is undercutting existing jobs and conditions. National has no positive plans for working people to address these issues,” Don says.
Pai Hiku is a food process worker from Auckland. She reports that wages remain too low across the food industry:
“Decent wages are one of the most important issue facing workers as they cast their votes,” Pai says.
“On food sites, we are still on low wages. Our business makes a lot of profit and we want a Living Wage. If you don’t want to see us sleeping in our cars, give us what we need. That is not a lot.”
Angelique Kerr, executive assistant and E tū’s Central Region Representative, is also ready for change.
“We’ve had nine long years of going backwards,” she says.
“I was in casual work in hospo for years and insecurity is the big issue there. People are working multiple jobs, and secondary tax makes it hard to get ahead. Labour has a plan to get rid of secondary tax. I like that.”
“My dad works three jobs and that’s standard in towns where there isn’t much work. He lives in a caravan because he can’t even afford to rent. I worry about him and his future – eventually he is going to have to live in a real house.”
The Mood of the Smoko Room is clear. Working people say: it’s time to change the Government.
E tū National Executive members were asked to rate the potential prime ministers out of five:
Jacinda Ardern: 4.67 /5
Bill English: 0.8 /5
The National Executive members were asked if they supported the status quo, or a change:
Supporters of the current Government: 0%
Supporters of a change: 100%
The National Executive members were asked to identify the most important issues:
Issue 1: Jobs and wages
Issue 2: Housing
Issue 3: Health