CLEW celebrates 50 years with a timely seminar

CLEW’s 50th Anniversary seminar to be held on Wednesday April 14, 9am-4.30pm at Victoria University of Wellington’s Rutherford House focuses on the question 'Is it time to reset our Employment Relations Systems?'

The Centre (previously as the Industrial Relations Centre), has monitored and researched the changes in industrial/employment relations systems for 50 years and has contributed much to the wider understanding of employment relations in New Zealand.

We are very pleased to have the Hon Michael Wood, Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety delivering an opening address for the seminar in a year where there is much on the Government’s legislative agenda in the area of employment relations. We are also pleased to have Chief Judge Christina Inglis contributing along with Professor Gordon Anderson from Victoria University of Wellington and Professor David Peetz from Griffith University in Queensland, Australia.

This seminar will consider the question above by looking at the legislative environment; union organisation and effectiveness; the new forms of work; and what new systems might be needed or what changes might ‘future-proof’ the current systems.

The early 1990s represented a significant shift in the way in which core employment provisions were determined – from a centrally negotiated, occupationally based system to decentralised, enterprise/employer-based system, with or without the involvement of union representation for employees. This reflected changes in the economic structures with consequent political and social changes – contracting out of services, particularly in the public sector; increase in companies owned offshore or by equity companies; wage rates and other employment conditions determined by the ‘market’ rather than through regulation and/or central negotiation across occupations. The Employment Relations Act restored union rights in bargaining but retained the decentralised system of the ECA and in the last 30 years there has been an eroding of collective bargaining and employment provisions, particularly wages. There is also new forms of ‘employment’ and work arrangements with the rise of labour hire companies; gig workers; and short-term contract/agency work.  So thirty years on from the ECA is our employment relations system still fit for purpose?

The programme for the seminar is available here>>.

Registration Fee - $230 (incl gst)

Registrations close – Friday, April 9, 2021.