Bus drivers across the country are celebrating a significant milestone with the news of New Zealand’s first-ever initiation of a Fair Pay Agreement.
Today, MBIE has given the green light to bus drivers to negotiate an FPA, in a move that will help transform the industry, says the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions.
“This Fair Pay Agreement will be integral in rejuvenating the bus driving industry, with better pay, working conditions, training, and health and safety practices,” said NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff.
“Bus drivers have been trapped in an industry where competitive tendering under the public transport operating model has created a race to the bottom for employment conditions. The successful negotiation of an FPA in this industry will stop that happening.
“In very real terms, this will transform the working lives of anyone who drives a bus for a living. It will also mean a vast improvement in services for bus users.
“An FPA is about more than just pay, it will also provide a mechanism to address the serious health and safety issues in the industry, including the increasing number of violent attacks on bus drivers.
“The NZCTU urges all employers to come to the table with unions and help create an FPA that will result in better conditions and which will support higher recruitment and retention of this essential workforce.”