Fair Pay Agreements Better for Workers and Good Employers

The PSA is calling on the Government to pave the way for Fair Pay Agreements, as new research shows they will both reduce inequality and provide a better balanced economy.

A report produced by BERL for the Council of Trade Unions has found a return to sector bargaining in the form of Fair Pay Agreements is the single biggest thing this Government could do to improve wellbeing.

It follows recommendations by the Fair Pay Agreement Working Group earlier this year that supported the introduction of the agreements, which would bring employers, workers and their unions together to agree on a fair minimum pay rate and conditions across a single industry.

"This research is significant because it highlights both the economic and social benefits of Fair Pay Agreements," says PSA national secretary Kerry Davies.

"It’s found they will assist good employers who compete on quality and innovation, rather than by driving down the wages and conditions of their workers."

The research reveals that New Zealand’s current model of individual and enterprise bargaining has failed, leading to the transfer of billions of dollars of wealth from workers to corporate interests.

In contrast, Fair Pay Agreements would deliver a better deal to vulnerable low paid workers in industries where collective bargaining is currently difficult, and help fix entrenched social problems like child poverty and homelessness.

"Fair Pay Agreements present an opportunity for this Government to be truly transformative," says Ms Davies.

"Improving economic performance and productivity, while giving a fair share of the rewards to hard working New Zealanders."