You are here: Home » PTI Stories » National » News
Business Standard

New Zealand bans 'zero hour' contracts

AFP  |  Wellington 

New Zealand has passed legislation banning 'zero hour' contracts, in what is thought to be one of the first laws in the developed world to end the use of deals criticised as exploitative.

Opposition Labor MP Iain Lees-Galloway was joined by his political opponents in supporting the Employment Standards Legislation Bill to end the use of the deals under which employees are required to be available for work but have no guaranteed minimum hours.

"To the best of my knowledge it's the first of its type (in the developed world), certainly in terms of the US and UK," Lees-Galloway told AFP.

"It's possible Denmark doesn't have them because these type of contracts are all about exploiting loopholes and I don't think Denmark had the loopholes in the first place."

The bill, which passed on Wednesday and comes into force on April 1, represents a win for workers, opposition Labour leader Andrew Little said.

"This will be welcome for those workers who have been forced to sit by the phone and sometimes left with no work to show for it," he said in a statement.

New Zealand's Council of Trade Unions acknowledged those workers who made public their personal stories about the corrosive impact of no security of hours or income.

Labour said under the new legislation, employers can no longer demand that workers be "available all the time for work without providing guaranteed hours in your agreement".

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Fri, March 11 2016. 14:28 IST