Ports of Auckland has advised the Maritime Union of New Zealand – Local 13 (MUNZ) that it does not find the counter-offer tabled on 6 January attractive, and that while it will continue with collective bargaining, it is proceeding with a proposal to contract out its labour force.
Ports of Auckland CEO, Tony Gibson said the union’s counter-offer failed to deliver the rapid improvements needed in work practices and productivity.
The loss of the Maersk and Fonterra business meant that the situation had changed dramatically over the last few weeks, he said.
“I welcome the opportunity to discuss these matters further with MUNZ when mediation resumes on Thursday. However, we’ve run out of time. Without rapid changes towards substantially more efficient labour practices, more customers and more jobs will be lost in the coming weeks.
“We’ve worked now for 11 months to achieve the changes needed, but the Union does not appear to be taking the issues seriously,” he said.
Gibson says the Port’s last offer remains its best and final offer. It includes a generous 10 per cent rise on hourly rates, performance bonuses of up to 20% on hourly rates, and the retention of existing benefits and entitlements in return for a new roster system that will provide increased operational flexibility while allowing workers to plan their rosters a month in advance.
As it signalled before Christmas, in parallel with the collective bargaining process, the Port is progressing plans for redundancies as a result of the loss of the Maersk and Fonterra business, and will begin a consultation process this week over a proposal to contract out its labour force.
It is holding a series of briefing meetings with staff this week to advise them of the process.
Mr Gibson said that if the proposed contract labour model was to proceed, he expected that the majority of affected employees would continue to work for the Port as employees of the selected contractors.
Meanwhile, Union workers at Ports of Auckland will begin another 48-hour strike at 11pm tonight, the fifth major disruption to Port operations since November.
Three ships have been impacted by the strike. One has bypassed, one is being serviced at the Ports’ multi-cargo wharf (not the container terminal) and one will be delayed approximately eight hours.
For further information contact:
Senior Manager Communications