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Unite 2014 Conference and AGM

20 Oct

U2012 Unite Conferencenite will be holding its 2014 National conference and AGM in Auckland on Monday 1st December and Tuesday 2nd December at the St Columba Centre, 40 Vermont St,  Ponsonby,  Auckland. Delegates will be attending from all over the country to participate in training workshops, discussions about the future of unionism and Unite, and to elect Unite’s National Executive, the leading body of the union.

 

The conference is a great opportunity for leading members from different sectors and regions to meet up, learn from each other’s experiences, and take the movement forward. Any member can attend as an observer but voting representatives need to be either elected as AGM reps or already elected as  a rep from their worksite.

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Message from Unite delegates in US – “It’s getting hot in here!”

5 Sep

Hundreds of American fast food workers arrested in mass disobedience in fight for a Union

From Los Angeles to New York, major fast food chains were put under siege by hundreds of fast food workers taking direct action in their fight for a union. Unite Union’s Angelyse Heitiare Armstrong was on the front lines of a sit down protest in Raleigh, North Carolina, and sent a short report before the police moved in:

"Protesting has been awesome but really tiring in this 33 plus degree heat, it’s so hot and no breeze-

I feel for the workers here, they’ve got it worse than us in New Zealand. It’s like they are in the last century, and its made us cry. But the women here are awesome, they are the new militants."

Angelyse, a Unite organiser and former KFC delegate, and McDonald’s delegate Tina Watson are in the US to share the experiences of fast food workers here with those in the US.

SkyCity workers first to vote in the 2014 election

5 Sep

Workers in Central Auckland march to early vote when the polls open. Unite Union and the SFWU are encouraging our members to vote to change the government.

The current National Government has tried to attack unions and workers entitlements, while most opposition parties have promised to increase the minimum wage by $2 an hour in their first year in government.

Workers met outside Skycity and marched down to Liston House in Hobson Street to be the first workers to vote en masse.

Authorised by Michael Treen,
6a Western Springs Road, Morningside.

We want to bring down the Government!

4 Sep

“We wanna bring down the Government- we wanna bring, bring down the Government!” was the chant on Hobson Street as 60 workers walked off the job from Skycity to go and vote for change.

Union delegates Tina Barnett and Gina Williams were up the front with a massive banner- “National- Not Our Future”. Workers from both Unite and SFWU held placards that demanded a living wage, secure hours, affordable housing, more rights at work including the right to strike and an end to restructuring and subcontracting. Skycity Cleaners directly affected by a new round of artificial subcontracting were first to cast their votes against National.

The experience of voting collectively together as workers was empowering. We were joined by Labour MPs Darien Fenton and Jacinda Adern, and the Mana Movement Tamaki Makaurau’s candidate Kereame Pene. Unite supports a vote for those parties who are commited to changing the government- Labour, the Greens and Internet Mana.

A collective march to the Auckland CBD voting booth has been organised for Saturday September 13th, leaving Aotea Square at 2pm. Join the facebook event page here-
https://www.facebook.com/events/700297206702973/?fref=ts

Unite Union delegates – get out and vote

28 Aug

Casework: 15-year-old working nights at McDonald’s

28 Aug

 

By Bonita Belworthy, Unite Organiser, Central Districts

It is always good when you get a quick resolution of an issue that has been brought to your attention by a member.

Every day we get calls and emails from members who have workplace issues they need help with.

One recent case was particularly pleasing to resolve.

A 15-year-old employed at a McDonald’s restaurant was being required to work the over night shift. This was a concern for me as as I have worked nights in the fast food industry and a 15-year-old should not have to deal with the type of verbal abuse we receive from the customers that frequent during those hours.

This member was not aware that working after 10:30pm he was entitled to a Transport allowance of $5.00 per shift and that being rostered on for 3-4 shifts a week he had to be issued with two pairs of trousers.

So first thing of course is to get hold of the Franchisee owner. In this case we are lucky because this one is good at resolving legitimate concerns. The Franchisee responded quickly, thanked me for raising the concerns and stated that the member would no longer be rostered on the overnight shifts with a guarantee that his total hours will not be impacted in any way.

The Franchisee was also a bit concerned when I mentioned that the member did not receive the travel allowance as it was an automated function of their payroll system. It turns out the member did get paid this allowance and I was assured the Restaurant Manager will go over the payslip and show the member where this allowance is located.

With the trousers, the member will be receiving them on his next rostered shift.

So we had a change of shifts with his hours protected and new uniforms provided. All benefits of being a Unite Union member.

Leaving you with the song by Justice Crew, Que Sera.

Why Unite supports protest against Israeli war on Palestine

18 Jul

 

PROTESTS PLANNED TODAY AND TOMORROW AROUND NZ

TODAY – WELLINGTON:
Friday 18th July, 12.30pm – 1.30pm. Embassy of Israel – Baileys Building, 36 Brandon Street (off Lambton Quay), Wellington

SATURDAY DUNEDIN:
Rally: 2pm Saturday 19 July at the Octagen.

SATURDAY AUCKLAND:
Rally: 2pm Saturday 19 July, Aotea Square, Queen St. Bring your own placards, banners & olive tree branches. Rally will hear brief speeches then march via TVNZ & Herald to the US consulate.

SATURDAY CHRISTCHURCH:
Rally: Saturday 19th July, 2.00pm Cathedral Square, Colombo Street, Christchurch Central

NOTE: Massive protests are taking place in cities around the whole world – a new ‘super power’ has emerged to stop Israel’s war on Gaza: global people’s power!

The following resolution was adopted by Unite Union in 2009.

Resolution on Palestine adopted by Unite Union

Preamble:

Over 170 Palestinian political parties, unions and other organisations including the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions issued a call in July 2005 for a global campaign of boycotts and divestment against Israel similar to those imposed against South African Apartheid.

Unite Union will work to:

1. Demand the Israeli Government immediately withdraw from the occupied territories and abide by UN resolution 242 which requires Israel to withdraw to 1967 borders.

2. Support the international campaign of boycott, divestment and sanctions on Israel until it meets its obligation to recognise the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self- determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law including the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.

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PIZZAHURT! Justice for the Pizza Hut Callcentre – Joe Carolan Speaks

17 Jul

https://www.facebook.com/events/1497674530468897/?ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular

Casino workers fight outsourcing – picket 1-3pm Friday

17 Jul

On Friday the 18th of July, Unite will be picketing SkyCity Casino urging them not to outsource the Cleaning Services department. This proposal will affect almost 100 workers, some with more than 10 years loyal service at the casino.

Unite workers and supporters will be rallying from 1-3pm outside the main casino entrance in opposition to the proposal. Outsourcing leads to reduced job security and uncertainty and the cleaners have strongly expressed their desire to remain directly employed by SkyCity.

SkyCity was given the International Convention Centre approval on the premise that it was a job creator. It has now shown how happy it is to reduce its workforce and we believe most of the 800 supposed jobs will be part time or casual and wonder how many more jobs SkyCity could shred before it is even opened.

Please come and show your support for these vulnerable workers as we ask SkyCity to do the right thing and keep their jobs.

#PIZZAHURT! Rally for fair redundancy pay for Pizza Hut workers 3.30pm Thursday

17 Jul

RALLY FOR JUSTICE FOR THE PIZZA HUT CALL CENTRE WORKERS

We deserve fair redundancy pay.

330pm, 666 Great South Road, Penrose.

For further info contact Malcolm Scott, Unite Delegate 021 177 8493 or Joe Carolan, Unite Union Campaigns Officer 029 44 55 702

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11292536

By Malcolm Scott, Unite Union Delegate
The pizza hut callcentre has been in existence for about 20 years in various forms. I started with the callcentre 12 years ago, soon after it re-located from the original corporate office to an office suite in mid-town, central auckland. Originally, we processed all pizza hut and KFC phone orders. Later, the KFC delivery service was discontinued. 9 1/2 years later, after extensive downsizing due to increasing automation of the pizza hut ordering process, it was annouced that we were getting restructured and re-located to the new head office, in penrose. Most of the remaining staff were laid off. One woman, who had been with the callcentre since the start and was unable to relocate due to her failing health, lost her job and was forced into retirement. She got nothing from the company aside from the legally mandated residual leave entitlement.

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