Protecting our workers from exploitation

New funding to increase the number of labour inspectors will improve the handling of increasingly complex and demanding cases, says Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway.

“The vast majority of New Zealand employers do the right thing by their staff, but we need to protect workers from those businesses who do not,” says Iain Lees-Galloway.

“Boosting the Labour Inspectorate with more staff and resources will enable this important service to protect all New Zealand workers from exploitation and unfair practices. This demonstrates the Coalition Government’s commitment to protecting workers’ rights.

“Businesses will also benefit from our plan to ensure a more level playing field for good employers, so that they are not undercut by unsavoury and unfair practices from competitors. 

“We plan to lift the capability and capacity of the Labour Inspectorate over the next three years. This first step helps the Labour Inspectorate deal with an increasingly complex and demanding workload, while allowing time to analyse where additional resources are best placed.

“Through Budget 2018 the Government is committing $8.8 million of new operating funding over four years for more labour inspectors and support staff. 

“New operating funding of $4.3 million over the same period addresses cost pressures in frontline employment services administered by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, including the Labour Inspectorate and Employment Mediation Services. 

“This is a good example of an investment being targeted wisely, providing resources where they are needed, and delivering better value for New Zealanders,” says Iain Lees-Galloway.