Members of the Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) working at the port of Timaru issued a fourth strike notice this afternoon following three issued earlier this week.
South Island RMTU organizer John Kerr said this gives notice of a new 24-hour strike on Sunday, December 19, following those notified for Thursday, December 16, Friday, December 17. December and Saturday, December 18.
“We have a strike mandate until Christmas Eve and while it is not our wish to disrupt the regional supply chain, employers have not indicated their willingness to change their previously expressed positions to offer wage adjustments lower than inflation. We have a potential date for mediation of December 10, but this needs to be confirmed by MBIE. As a result, we have decided to publish a new 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 that they would prefer not to enter into a MECA and have countered our demand for an 8% increase in wages with offers below the current inflation rate. We are hopeful that we can reach an agreement within two weeks before the start of the industrial action as there are quite a few shipments planned around the strike period. ”
“As the essential workers who have moved cargo along the docks throughout this pandemic, our members believe it is time for their efforts to be recognized, however.”
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