Week 11: Hero – New Zealand

by George_East on March 15, 2016

NZ_heroThis week’s Hero of the Week is New Zealand for showing the world the way on zero hours contracts

The government of New Zealand is a one of the centre-right, led by Prime Minister John Key since 2008. His National Party is the master of all it surveys, crushing the opposition Labour Party in the last two elections.

However, in stark contrast to the UK government, this week saw the passing of legislation in New Zealand to outlaw zero hour contracts. You will remember that the very proposal of a measure to restrict and regulate their use by Ed Miliband at the last general election was seen as tantamount to communism and showed just how unserious the Labour Party was on economics in the modern world.

What is even more astonishing is that the law (originally promoted by New Zealand’s Unite trade union) passed through the New Zealand parliament unanimously. You heard that correctly.  Not a single vote against.

As a result from 1 April 2016, all employment contracts must guarantee a minimum number of hours.

Zero hour contracts are one of the scourges of modern employment – a new form of casualisation leading to extreme financial insecurity.   New Zealand has shown the way and from the other side of the world, we here at Allthatsleft can only stand back and applaud.

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