NZEI Te Riu Roa takes educators’ pay concerns to Public Service Minister

11 May 2021

NZEI Te Riu Roa took educators’ concerns to the Public Service Minister today in a meeting between the Government and public sector unions.

“Educators have been frustrated and disheartened by the Government’s recent statements on public sector pay. Today we led a conversation with the Minister around pay in education – focusing especially on the hard work educators have done to support communities throughout the pandemic”, says National Secretary Paul Goulter. “We particularly emphasised the disappointment of principals around their pay outcomes in their last collective agreement negotiations.”

“As public sector unions, we discussed with the Minister how we now want to move forward.

“We all agreed that upcoming bargaining will be in good faith with no predetermined outcomes, that there will be scope to discuss cost of living increases in negotiations for all union members covered by collective agreements – with higher increases for lower paid workers, and that there is ultimately no pay freeze.

“We agreed that this new guidance, which replaces the Government’s proposed three-year guidance on public sector pay, will be reviewed next year.

"The Minister agreed that wellbeing and workload issues are a priority to address, and he will explain this to those who will be at the negotiating table as soon as possible.

“As a union, we’ll continue to push on this issue and to amplify our members’ concerns – especially as we draw closer to the start of negotiations for the tens of thousands of our members on public sector collective agreements in just a couple of months’ time. We’re hopeful of what we can achieve, but of course it will be in negotiations that we'll see the true extent of the Government's commitment to what they've said today.”

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