The CTU warmly welcomes the government announcement to explore a social unemployment insurance scheme. The CTU, together with Government and Business New Zealand, have already been looking at possible ways to support workers through change in the Future of Work Tripartite Forum.
“When somone here loses their job, the pressure to get their next job quickly means they grab the first thing they can find. As a result their income from that job, and susequent jobs, takes a hit. It’s called ‘wage scarring’”, says CTU President Richard Wagstaff.
“The evidence from overseas is that social insurance helps to reduce the ‘scarring’. It also makes sure that workers have time to find the job that best fits their skills and needs. That’s good for them and it’s good for us all.
“These schemes are very common overseas. New Zealand is almost unique in the developed world in not having any income protection for workers who lose their jobs.
“Having a scheme that protects workers will remove some of the fear associated with redundancy and will particularly support communities hit by large-scale job losses.
“The CTU looks forward to working closely with the Government and Business New Zealand on the details of this proposal. Together with Fair Pay Agreements and improved sick leave, this proposal could go a significant way to improving the industrial relations of New Zealand.”