Christchurch Scoop

Timaru Port Workers Issue Fourth Strike Notice

Press Release – Rail And Maritime Transport Union

Members of the Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) working at the Port of Timaru have this afternoon issued a fourth strike notice following on from the three issued earlier this week.

RMTU South Island Organiser John Kerr says this gives notice of a further 24 hour strike on Sunday 19th December, following on from those notified for Thursday 16th December, Friday 17th December and Saturday 18th December.

‘We have a mandate from for strike action through to Christmas Eve and while it is not our wish to disrupt the regional supply chain the employers have not indicated a willingness to amend their previously expressed positions of offering below inflation wage adjustments. We have a potential date for mediation of 10th December but this needs to confirmed by MBIE. Accordingly we have decided to issue a further notice today.

‘The RMTU has been in negotiations for a Multi-Employer Collective Agreement (MECA) with Prime Port Timaru and Quality Marshalling since May and the employers have made it clear they would prefer not to enter into a MECA and have countered our claim for an 8% pay increase with offers that are below the current rate of inflation. We remain hopeful we can reach an agreement in the two weeks before industrial action is due to commence as there is quite a bit of shipping scheduled around the strike period.’’

‘As essential workers who have kept cargo moving across the wharves throughout this pandemic our members do feel it is time their efforts were recognized however .’

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