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www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 1 Issue 20 • December 2007 Magazine of the Maritime Union of New Zealand ISSN 1176-3418 The Maritimes On the line at Ports of Auckland

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Official magazine of the Maritime Union of New Zealand

Text of Maritimes December 2007

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 1

    Issue 20 December 2007 Magazine of the Maritime Union of New Zealand ISSN 1176-3418


    On the line at Ports of Auckland

  • 2 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz

    Whats going on at the Port of Napier?

    Twenty five permanent and 60 casual jobs are under threat because Port of Napier management are undermining job security,wages and conditions through contracting out.

    These workers make a massive contribution to Hawkes Bay through their work, their earnings and their skills. Yet they are being treated as disposable. Its not good enough.

    The Port of Napier calls itself our port. It is our port owned by the people of Hawkes Bay.*

    The Port of Napier has a responsibility towards its workers and the Hawkes Bay community.

    We need secure jobs and a stable workforce at the Port of Napier, for the future of the port and the future of Hawkes Bay our future.

    Its not too late. We are campaigning to make sure that no jobs are lost and that the Port of Napier starts to act like a responsible publicly-owned business.

    How you can help!

    To send an automatic email message to Port of Napier CEO Garth Cowie to show your support for secure jobs, visit this website:www.labourstart.org/munz

    To keep up with the latest news on our campaign website, visit: www.portofnapier.info

    * Hawkes Bay Regional Council own 92% of the Ports shares, with the remaining 8% held by horizons.mw (formerly Manawatu Wanganui Regional Council). Source: http://www.portofnapier.biz/pdf/Ownership.pdf

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 3

    Edition 20, December 2007

    ContentsPort of Napier campaign 2Editorial and contents 3General Secretarys report 4Update from National President 5Ports of Auckland dispute 6Port of Napier dispute 8Coastal Shipping comeback 9Terry Ryan 10Terror raids 11CTU Biennial Conference 12MUA meeting 14 On the line Local 13 photo special 16ITF 18Womens report 19ITF Seafarers Section 20Electoral Finance Bill 21 Port roundups 22Obituaries 30Local contacts 31

    The Maritimes is published quarterly by the Maritime Union of New Zealand.

    ISSN 1176-3418

    National Office:PO Box 27004WellingtonNew ZealandTelephone: 04 3850 792Fax: 04 3848 766Email: [email protected]: www.munz.org.nz

    Editor: Victor BillotMobile: 021 482219Fax: 09 9251125Email: [email protected]: PO Box 339, DunedinNew Zealand

    Editorial Board: Trevor Hanson, Phil Adams, Garry Parsloe and Russell Mayn

    Deadline for all Port reports, submissions, photos and letters: 1 March 2008 for next edition

    Cover photo of Local 13 members on the Ports of Auckland pickets, 24 October 2007, by Simon Oosterman of the National Distribution UnionFor more online photos, see www.flickr.com/ndu

    Thanks to our photographers: Simon Oosterman, Terry Ryan, Garry Parsloe, Jay, Kathy Whelan, Julie Howard and others

    Contact the Maritime UnionNational OfficeTelephone: 04 3850 792Fax: 04 3848 766Address: PO Box 27004, WellingtonOffice administrator: Ramesh PathmanathanEmail: [email protected]

    General Secretary: Trevor HansonDirect dial: 04 8017 614Mobile: 021 390585Email: [email protected]

    National President: Phil AdamsDirect dial: 03 4728 052Mobile: 0274 377601Email: [email protected]

    National Vice President: Garry ParsloeDirect dial: 09 3032 562Mobile: 021 326261Email: [email protected]

    Assistant General Secretary: Russell Mayn Direct dial: 09 3034 652Mobile: 021 760886Email: [email protected]

    ITF Inspectorate: Kathy WhelanDirect dial: 04 8017 613Mobile: 021 666405Email: [email protected]

    Communications Officer: Victor BillotMobile: 021 482219Fax: 09 9251125Address: PO Box 339, DunedinEmail: [email protected]

    Ports of Auckland dispute page 6

    Port of Napier dispute page 8


    Standing together gets resultsby Victor Billot Maritimes EditorIn an interconnected world, workers must unite across borders, educate ourselves about the world around us, and actively sup-port each other in times of need.The Maritime Union of New Zealand has recently been involved in disputes with employers. In October there were strikes at the Ports of Auckland. Our union and our pickets received good sup-port from other unions.The Maritime Union is also currently campaigning in the Port of Napier to keep secure local jobs.We have received good support from the wider union movement, including the Council of Trade Unions, International Transport Workers Federation and our fellow maritime unions overseas.We have also received support from the international workers website, Labourstart, based in London, which has set up an email campaign for us on their website (see opposite page).

    Getting activeThere is one important thing to remember at this stage. With all this help we are getting, it should be noted that every Maritime Union branch in New Zealand should be ready and willing to support other workers in their struggles. This means being active, getting down to pickets in person, using our initiative and not just waiting for someone else to do it. We have an obligation as union members to get involved.The great danger for any union is for members to become discon-nected from the union and to merely see it as a kind of glorified insurance scheme.In reality, the union is a living breathing organism, made up of real people doing real jobs. By coming together in a democratic, open and active union we are part of a collective. The best way to sum up this philosophy is the old slogan: Touch One, Touch All. If an injury is done to one worker, then that injury is felt by all. By standing together, we can get results. Our society encourages the look after number one mental-ity and this attitude can creep into the Union as well. This suits employers because as soon as workers are divided against each other, there is only one winner. That winner is not the worker.The days of standing alone are over, if they ever existed. We need to be able to reach out to other workers for help, and return their help.

    Maritime workers play a leadership roleMaritime workers have always been an international group, and we can draw on strong traditions of militant unionism, progres-sive radical politics and a broad outlook as we take a leadership role in the workers movement.The key issues we face as a union are political awareness, educa-tion, the development of our younger members so they can step up to leadership positions, regular union stopwork meetings and the promotion of a union culture on and off the job.We have been handed down a remarkable organization by the workers who came before us and who fought hard for the wages and conditions we have achieved. Our responsibility is to main-tain and improve our union for the generations to come.

  • 4 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    Industrial front heating up for summer

    The right of working people to withdraw their labour is a vital tool in our ongoing quest for good wages, terms and conditions in the workplace

    by Trevor Hanson General SecretaryAfter a relative spell of calm on the industrial front this year, events have picked up speed over the last couple of months.Maritime Union

    members have taken industrial action at the Ports of Auckland and as we go to print it appears more of the same will be happening in Napier.National President Phil Adams will write more about these events in his column in this edition of the Maritimes.As always, the right of working people to withdraw their labour is the key here and is a vital tool in our ongoing quest for good wages, terms and conditions in the workplace.

    Maritime Union national executive meetsThe Maritime Union held its six monthly national executive meeting in Wellington from 19-20 November. Representatives from all ports attended the meeting. Much of the discussion was about the industrial actions in Auckland and Napier.

    We welcomed David Schleibs and Len Covell as observers from the Maritime Union of Australia to the meeting. We also had a couple of younger delegates attend, Bradley Clifford and Tania Kahui from Wellington Branch, which was good to see.Two members from the Port of Napier attended the meeting as well. Brendon Morris and Nathan Owen were able to give a rank and file perspective on events in the Hawkes Bay.

    TerrorismThe recent furore about terrorist threats in New Zealand has been of concern to the Maritime Union. While the full story has not yet come out, the Maritime Union (as well as the CTU) is opposed to the Terror-ism Suppression Act.The TSA in our view is simply a response to the George W. Bush led war on terror and is aimed at smoothing relations with such people rather than any situation within New Zealand.If individuals are involved in violence or planning violence, there is already law in place that covers that in New Zealand.At the political level, terrorism is often the result of political, social or economic prob-lems that have not been dealt with. In the end, a solution to violence can only be found when all people in the world have access to a decent standard of living.This brings us to our main concern. Where will the line be drawn in terrorist acts? Will industrial action or pickets be seen as terrorism especially if they involve in-ternational parties such as global maritime operators? What effect will free trade agreements have on the way we deal with such issues?These questions have not been answered in a satisfactory way.Another way of looking at the situation is that the largest acts of terrorism that have taken place in the world are acts of state terrorism the wars and invasions started by governments, and actions of violence taken against citizens by repressive gov-ernments.It is worth remembering that the only act of terrorism that has taken place on New Zealand soil is the bombing of the Rainbow Warrior, by agents of the French Government.

    CTU biennial conferenceThe CTU Biennial Conference was held in Wellington in October. The Maritime Union attended and a report from National Vice President Garry Parsloe is included in this edition of the Maritimes. The conference also saw the election of new CTU President, Helen Kelly.We welcome Helen into her new job and look forward to working with her.

    Crane safetyThe union has attended meetings held by Maritime New Zealand on the issue of crane safety. The issue of creeping cranes has come up with Tasman Orient Line, especially with the Tasman Trader and Pathfinder. We ask any members who experience problems on these or any other vessels to notify their branch and the national office of the Union as soon as possible. If necessary work should be stopped on health and safety grounds.

    Australian electionsThe Maritime Union welcomes the land-slide election of a Labor Government in Australia. On some key issues such as Work Choices (John Howards version of the Employment Contracts Act), global warming and the Iraq War, the Labor Party are sounding very good. Howard is gone.After the celebrations comes the hard work. The change of a government is important but it doesnt remove the need for un-ions to independently organize and keep speaking out for workers interests. We can be sure that strong Australian unions such as the MUA and CFMEU will be continuing the fight.In 2008 it will be the turn of New Zea-lands workers to decide the future.

    The Maritime Union of New Zealand wishes all members, friends and families a safe and happy Christmas, New Year and summer.

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 5


    Port companies have a social responsibility

    We have no intention of letting one irresponsible port company start a process of contracting out and further casualization in the maritime industry

    by Phil Adams National PresidentThe Maritime Union has seen major industrial action over the past few months. These events are featured in this issue of the Maritimes.

    There have been a number of other matters affecting the Union, including the coastal shipping strategy, health and safety issues around cranes, and a number of important meetings for the Maritime Union both on the national and international level.

    Auckland WaterfrontAuckland Local 13 have engaged their employer over wage rates. The Ports of Auckland management tried some unu-sual tactics in the dispute including paying money into workers accounts, based on what management thought they should be getting as a wage rise.You wonder what is going on in the board-room to justify the managers enormous salaries when they come up with ideas like that.The members at Local 13 stuck together through the dispute which involved rolling stoppages and a two-day strike in October. This issue of the Maritimes features an article and a photo special on the dispute.Congratulations to Local 13 for a strong, disciplined and well-organized industrial action.At the time of writing, no resolution had been reached and negotiations continue.

    Port of NapierAs I write, it appears we may be heading for problems at the Port of Napier. The Port company management have decided to contract out container stevedoring to ISO, the Tauranga anti-union stevedores.The Maritime Union is mobilizing nation-ally and sending out the word to our inter-national affiliates about this situation.We have no intention of letting one irre-sponsible port company start a process of contracting out and further casualization in the maritime industry.

    Worse still, the Port Company is owned by the people of Hawkes Bay through their Regional Council. Yet they seem to have no concept of their responsibility towards local workers. The idea that you can dump a workforce at the flick of a switch is unacceptable and the managers behind this decision should be ashamed of themselves.The workers affected at Hawkes Bay Stevedoring Services look forward to an uncertain future in the New Year. This is a skilled, hard-working and experienced group, who have generated the profits of the Port Company.Its about time we started running things for the benefit of the people who do the work.The message we are sending the Port of Napier management is that they have the chance to change their ways. If they choose to trample over maritime workers, then they will be creating a situation that they will regret for a very long time.The Port of Napier management need to be put on notice and we will be making sure they have a chance to consider their actions over December.

    Shipping reviewThe release of a government report into coastal shipping has been long awaited by the union. We were happy to see recognition of the need to promote coastal shipping and believe that the report shows a good way forward. Coastal shipping is poised for a major comeback as growing congestion, fuel prices and the environmental impact of road transport increases. The key issues the Maritime Union will be looking for is an integrated shipping sys-tem that offers quality, well-paid jobs and builds up a well-trained workforce from the new generation coming through.

    International meetingsThree national officials of the Maritime Union, Phil Adams, Russell Mayn and Garry Parsloe, attended the National Council Meeting of the Maritime Union of Australia in Sydney in October.

    This was an informative meeting and a full report by Garry Parsloe is in this edition of the Maritimes.In April 2008, we will be sending a sub-stantial delegation of officials and rank and file members to the MUA National Conference, as well as the Mining and Maritime Conference.The continuing close working relationship we have with the MUA is of great benefit to both Unions and we look forward to their 2008 Conference.Congratulations are also due to the MUA and the Australian workers and union movement for their removal of John Howard and replacement by a more worker-friendly Labor Government in Australia.Our Union was also represented by National Vice President Garry Parsloe at the ITF Seafarers Section Maritime Safety Committee meeting in Copenhagen, Den-mark, in October.

    Thank you to all members and officials of the Maritime Union of New Zealand for your continuing support and hard work for the Union, and all the best for the New Year.

  • 6 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    National Distribution Union members join the Ports of Auckland pickets, 2 October 2007(photo by Simon Oosterman)

    Auckland Local 13 strikeMaritime workers from Auck-land Waterfront Branch Local 13 at Ports of Auckland say their industrial action is about getting a fair share of the profit their hard work generates.Around 250 workers at the Ports of Auckland went on strike for 48 hours on 2 Octo-ber. They carried out rolling strikes on Tuesday 9 October, Wednesday 17 October and Monday 22 October (Labour Day).These stoppages were for a symbolic 3.25 hours each.This was a reflection of the workers feelings on the actions of the employer and the 3.25% wage increase they were trying to force workers to accept.

    Maritime Union Auckland Waterfront Branch Local 13 President Denis Carlisle says that maritime workers are the engine driving the success of New Zealands biggest con-tainer port.Ports of Auckland volume is up 12.6% over last year. Our workers handled the equivalent of 773,160 standard-ized containers last year. The growth of the port is due to the productivity, skills and round the clock shifts of maritime workers.Mr Carlisle says workers pro-ductivity and increased living costs are not reflected in pay offers from management.

    He says management have blundered by trying to bypass wage negotiations and paying wage increases that had not been agreed to.Ports of Auckland started to make extra unauthorized pay-ments into our members bank accounts of the amount they feel we are worth.Mr Carlisle said this tactic was clearly designed to undermine genuine negotiations.Obviously the workers see this tactic for what it is, and are united and determined to see a good outcome arrived at by genuine negotiation, not by managers trying to bypass the process.

    We want upfront negotiations to get a deal that both sides agree to. Not pocket money. Its about respect.He says some of the key issues behind the workers action are pay claims, including back pay from 30 November 2006, and a no-cost claim that seeks to bring a small group of Plan-ner/Supervisors and Cargo Officers to join the Collective Agreement.Local 13 entered into a facili-tation process in November 2007 at the request of the Port Company.The results werent satisfactory to workers.Local 13 thanks all individuals, branches and unions who have sent in messages of solidarity and support for their struggle.

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 7


    Workers at Ports of Auckland have been united in their cause and include both older and newer members of the union.Gordon Kopu (58) has worked on the Auckland waterfront for 31 years. He currently works at Axis Fer-gusson terminal as a stevedore, driving container and ship cranes and straddles, lashing ships and as a foreman.For 14 of those years he has been on the union branch executive.Hes been married for 36 years, has four children, and says he has two families my own family and my Union family.He says he believes that peo-ple who work together and socialize together work well together.I make sure we have socials, touch and rugby league down here, so we work well together and make a strong union.As a picket captain during the recent two day strike, he says his job is to make sure every-one toes the line.Its good for the newer mem-bers to be on the picket so they learn about why they are there and how to behave.He says the way manage-ment has acted has helped the Union.Its pushed people towards us.

    Carl Findlay (39) is one of the younger members at Ports of Aucklands Axis Bledisloe terminal. A straddle driver and foreman, he has worked on the water-front for over five years and previously worked contracting for the Power Board.He says shifts at the Ports of Auckland run from 7am-3pm, 3pm-11pm and 11pm-7am, around the clock seven days a week.He says the actions of the Port Company had created a nega-tive reaction with workers.The blokes had a gutsful and were ready to rumble.As a delegate and union execu-tive member, Carl was a picket captain at the two day strike in October as well.He says it was a good experi-ence.There was good public sup-port and the blokes were really buoyant.The whole thing has been a real eye opener.He says younger members are picking up what the Union is about and the industrial action has been providing a bit of an education.We dont want to go back-wards - were thankful for the conditions the old unionists fought for.Carl says when working for a big company like Ports of Auckland, its absolutely essen-tial to be part of the union.

    Workers united in their cause

    Local 13 picket captain Gordon Kopu on the Auckland picket line (photo by Simon Oosterman)

    There was good public support and the blokes were really buoyant the whole thing has been a real eye opener

  • 8 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson speaking with Napier members Troy Cram, Brendon Morris and the Napier Branch President Barry Crawford during a national officials visit to the Port of Napier in November 2007

    Port of Napier workers demand secure jobs

    The Hawkes Bay Regional Council-owned Port of Napier has a responsibility to the local community and should operate in the public interest

    The Port of Napier faces industrial disrup-tion and international union solidarity actions as local workers prepare to defend their livelihoods.The Maritime Union of New Zealand says management actions are putting secure local jobs in jeopardy and threatening the future of the port.

    Job losses threatenedMembers of the Maritime Union employed at Hawkes Bay Stevedoring Services have been threatened with job losses after a con-tainer stevedoring contract was awarded to Mount Maunganui-based stevedore ISO.The decision will affect around 25 per-manent jobs and around 60 casual jobs at Hawkes Bay Stevedoring Services in the Port of Napier from the start of 2008.Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says the situation has already had an enormous impact on local workers, and will lead to inevitable attacks on wages, conditions and health and safety in the future.

    We have made every effort to talk to the Port Company, but they seem determined to hit the self-destruct button and have left us with no option but to take this dispute to the next level.This is a situation where secure local jobs that benefit the local community are being dumped through what is effectively a contracting out process. The Maritime Union will do whatever it takes to ensure that secure local jobs are protected.He says the Maritime Union of New Zea-land has the support of the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions and the Interna-tional Transport Workers Federation.

    Responsibility to local communityMr Hanson says the Hawkes Bay Re-gional Council-owned Port of Napier has a responsibility to the local community and should operate in the public interest.This port company promotes itself as our port, but they behave as if they have no responsibility to the local people of Hawkes Bay.He says Port of Napier management have made a bad error of judgement that will cause all sorts of problems for the Hawkes Bay economy.

    Their actions have led to a situation where the viability and success of the port is put in danger.Mr Hanson says the answer to the problem is simple.Management need to sit down with the Union to find a solution that is mutually acceptable, before they cause major harm to the local workforce, their business and the entire economy of Hawkes Bay.

    Profits generated by workersMr Hanson says the port workers in Napier were gutted and angry at Port of Napiers decision.Our members have worked 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for the Port Company and generated big profits for the Hawkes Bay Regional Council and the local people.National officials were in Napier in November to meet local members and to negotiate with management.Further actions are expected over the December period.

    For more information, view www.portofnapier.info

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 9


    The ITF Dockers Section Committee meeting held in London on 15 November representing more than 190 Dockers Unions in 200 coun-tries which are responsible for organising some 400,000 dock-ers and port workers: Notes with concern that the Maritime Union of New Zealand (MUNZ) informed the meeting that the management of the Port of Napier is hand-ing over container stevedoring to the anti-union stevedore ISO at the end of the year 2007. Further notes with great concern that this development is leading to job losses of union members and Casualization of port labour, which has resulted in ports of convenience within New Zealand.

    Maritime Union Napier branch members Brendon Morris and Nathan Owen attended the recent National Executive meeting to give a rank and file perspective on the situation at Port of Napier

    Coastal shipping is on the verge of a major comeback.As the costs associated with increasing freight transport start to hit home, the coastal shipping option is being talked about as the transport mode of the future.A draft government coastal shipping strategy, Sea Change, was launched in November to outline the way forward for the industry.The strategy noted that freight volumes are forecast to double by 2020, and combining rail, road, and shipping was key to boosting exports.About 15 percent of freight is currently carried by coastal services, including the Cook Strait ferries. Its likely that larger deepwa-ter vessels will not be able to call at all New Zealand ports in future, so building coastal shipping would help sustain regional ports and link them with main hub ports.It would also help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and ease transport congestion. The Maritime Union has welcomed the report as a good start.

    Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says the goal of moving 30 per cent of domestic freight by coastal shipping by 2040 is a move in the right direction.The Maritime Union has worked alongside Govern-ment and industry in this area and we are happy to see real progess being made.He says the union is especially pleased that there is an ac-knowledgement of the need for training young New Zealand seafarers to join the ageing maritime workforce.Coastal shipping is on the way back and we need to ensure that there are qual-ity, well-paid and skilled jobs available for young people in the maritime industry.The Maritime Union will be taking an active role in work-ing with Government and industry to ensure the interests of maritime workers are pro-moted in the process.The Maritime Union is work-ing with the CTU to respond to the strategy and make our voice heard in favour of build-ing up coastal shipping as the way of the future.

    For more information on the Sea Change Strategy, view this website:http://www.transport.govt.nz/seachange/

    Coastal shipping comeback

    Regrets that initiatives devel-oped by the Maritime Union of New Zealand, its members and leadership to reach a mutually negotiated agreement have not been answered by the Port of Napier management. Supports the Maritime Union of New Zealand in its efforts to negotiate a settlement with all parties involved to the benefit of the workers. Calls upon the management of the Port of Napier to recon-sider its position. Resolves that the Secretariat monitors the developments in the Port of Napier closely and in due course responds in the most militant way to support the Maritime Union of New Zealand by all lawful means of international solidarity.

    400 000 dockers worldwide supporting Napier wharfies

  • 10 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    Former Assistant General Secretary of the Maritime Union of New Zealand Terry Ryan receives a standing ovation from the National Executive on his election to life membership, 21 October 2007

    Terry Ryan honoured with life membershipOne of the most well-known wharfies in New Zealand was elected life member of the Maritime Union at the recent national executive meeting in Wellington.Terry Ryan of Auckland Wa-terfront Branch Local 13 has played a key role in the union for decades as a highly respect-ed figure locally, nationally and internationally. The Maritimes magazine spoke to Terry recently and asked him about his time on the water-front, and the kind of changes he has witnessed over a long working life.Terry grew up in the Auckland suburb of Point Chevalier and still lives there today. He says the area has changed considerably from when he was young, when it was a state house, working class area, where everyone played league.Terry started work on the Auck-land waterfront in 1964 aged in his mid-20s as he noted, this was before many of our current union members were born.He was on a list of 74 workers trying to get jobs on the water-front through the WIC (Water-front Industry Commission).

    In those days the WIC was a joint employer-union organiza-tion that employed all water-front workers, who were then assigned to different stevedores on the day. Terry went down to the wharf the day before his interview and ran into a couple of jok-ers I played league with. He was introduced to one of the selection panel as well. Out of the 74 applicants, four got a job, three league players and an Irishman. Terry was one of the lucky four.This was at a time of compul-sory unionism and unqualified preference. Union members were the first to get available work and seagulls (casual workers) picked up any extra work.Terry estimates at the time there were around 2000 waterfront workers, 1500 talley clerks and 1200 harbour workers on the Auckland waterfront. The union had just changed its name from the Auckland Cargo Workers Union to the Water-side Workers Union. Eddie Isbey was the president (and later a Labour MP).

    Waterfront unions in New Zealand were still individual port unions, a result of the fallout from the 1951 waterfront lockout. Terry says in the 1960s the union was a major influence in peoples lives, as everybody had the weekends off. Wharfies had sports clubs, bands, debating and chess clubs, and he says there was a lot more intermin-gling of members and a more cultural side of life.In 1970 he was elected onto the Auckland executive.When you first get elected on its a popularity vote, but after that you have to stand on your own two feet.From then on in, Terry served continuously through to 2004, as secretary, vice president and president at different times.He says there were many people who influenced him in the early days, but one name that stands out is Ted Thomp-son, whose leadership made a big impression on the young wharfie.

    One of the first jobs Terry undertook as president was to get a history of the union published, written by the late labour historian Bert Roth and entitled Wharfie from handbarrows to straddles: Unionism on the Auckland Waterfront, in 1993.The handbarrows to straddles part of the title was Terrys own creation, and he says it sums up many of the changes that have occurred over his working life.He recalls working hard cargo like butter and mutton where you could be in the same hatch for months.The union received a whack with port reform in the late 1980s, and consciously decided to put money aside, which later helped in disputes with employers as the union could match the employers legal action and go all the way with them.However Terry says the biggest asset of the union is a non-fi-nancial one.The ability to bring officials from the ranks . . . its unique to wharfies and seafarers. Youve got the advantage of on the job knowledge, which is a major strength. The strength of any union is the strength of its job delegates.Terry also served as the national assistant general secretary of the Maritime Union, and some-thing he is obviously proud of is being elected to the Dock-ers World Committee of the International Transport Workers Federation in 1998.He is the first New Zealander to hold a position on this central body of dock workers for the world. His term on the committee runs through to 2010, although he is now represented at meetings by a proxy. Terrys service to the union continues as editor of the Local 13 magazine, Port News, and he is playing a central role as sec-retary/treasurer of the newly formed Veterans Association.In November 2007, Terry at-tended the National Executive meeting of the Maritime Union in Wellington where he was elected to life membership, and received a standing ovation for his sincere and generous speech.

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 11


    by Robert Reid President, National Distribution UnionThe so-called anti-terrorism raids by the police on indi-viduals in Ruatoki and other parts of the country have been dominating the news over the last couple of months. The Solicitor-General has refused the police permission to charge those arrested with offences under the Terrorism Suppression Act. Subsequently, all those arrested have now been released from custody and remanded on bail. The TV news has been full of stories on the raids, the court cases and the debate about them every night. We have heard many callers give their point of view on the radio talkback shows, and no doubt we have discussed these issues with our friends, fami-lies and workmates. For some of us, these events may seem a world away. But for some union members, the actions have been very close to home. Friends, whanau and a whole iwi, Tuhoe, have been caught up in the police actions. And as we have watched we have indeed seen terror.

    We have seen fear on the faces of those whose homes were invaded, cars stopped and searched by the police. The Government and police are saying that commando-style raids were necessary to prevent these people from carrying out terrorist activities against us. We are told to suspend judgement until we hear the evidence. But are people running en-vironmental shows in Taupo likely terrorists? Are people trying to save snails in West-land terrorists? Is the Tuhoe nation terrorist? Not even the Solicitor-General thinks so. Many unions through the Council of Trade Unions have opposed the Governments Terrorism Suppression laws that were pushed through Par-liament following the terrorist attack on the Twin Towers in New York on 9/11. We opposed them because we said existing laws could be used to arrest people who were planning or undertaking violent or terrorist activity. We said the danger was that the laws could be used to crack down and suppress the demo-cratic rights of unions and other groups to organise or protest or campaign on their issues.

    The raids in October confirmed our fears. It has been Tuhoe, Maori, environmental, peace, human and animal rights activists that have been put under surveillance, had their houses searched, and in some cases been arrested. All over the world trade unionists are terrorised and killed. Guy Ryder, Secretary of the International Trade Union Congress, told us at this years NZCTU conference that an appalling global total of 144 trade unionists were murdered for defending workers rights in 2006, while more than 800 suffered beatings or torture. There were also nearly 5,000 arrests and more than 8,000 dismissals of workers because of their trade union activities. In New Zealand, trade unionist and stationary engine driver, Fredrick George Evans, was killed by police in Waihi on 12 November 1912. On 27 March 1984 Ernie Abbott was killed by a bomb in the Wellington Trades Hall. A number of others, including myself, had a lucky escape. The police never found the bomber.

    Why unions condemn terror raidsAnd on 31 December 1999, Christine Clark died after be-ing deliberately run over by the driver of a four wheel drive vehicle while she was on a Wa-terside Workers Union picket in Lyttleton. Workers in New Zealand are still suffering from the terror-ism of workplace accidents and deaths. There are around 100 work-place deaths every year and the Government estimates that between 700 and 1,000 workers die prematurely in New Zea-land as a result of work-related disease each year. It is time to repeal these Ter-rorism Suppression laws, and it is time to stand up for our human and trade union rights and deal with the real terrorists against working people in New Zealand and around the world.

    For more information viewhttp://www.civilrightsdefence.org.nz/

    It is time to repeal these Terrorism Suppression laws, and it is time to stand up for our human and trade union rights

  • 12 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    by Garry Parsloe National Vice PresidentThe New Zealand Council of Trade Unions Biennial Conference was held on 1517 October 2007.National officials Trevor Hanson, Russell Mayn, Joe Fleetwood and Garry Parsloe attended on behalf of the Mari-time Union.Day one opened with an open-ing address from President of the Council of Trade Unions Ross Wilson.Ross spoke on the trade union movement, its history, some of its low moments and some of its major achievements.He spoke on ACC issues, health and safety issues, elec-tion issues and other issues fac-ing the trade union movement.The next speaker was Prime Minister Helen Clark.Helen spoke on the relation-ship between Government and the CTU. She went on to address the good work that the Labour Government has achieved in recent years.

    Helen concluded by address-ing issues of sustainability, the environment, climate change, peace keeping and other mat-ters that the Labour Govern-ment is involved with and committed to.After morning smoko, we had a Conference outline from CTU Secretary Carol Beaumont. There were the procedural matters of the 2005 Minutes, Credentials Report, Election of Returning Officers and Scrutineers, a Financial Report, Election of Trustees and a Bien-nial Report.There was discussion around financial issues before Carol expanded on the wage cam-paign, recent disputes, growth within unions, the minimum wage campaign, collective bargaining, work life balance, union education, immigra-tion, rebuilding unionism and regional structures.The next session was under the heading of Unions, Sustain-ability and Democracy.

    This section was delivered firstly by Carol Beaumont and supported by Helen Kelly, Richard Wagstaff and Sharon Clair.This section had an open discussion around the above heading.The final session before lunch was headed Globalising Solidarity. This section was delivered by ITUC Secretary, Guy Ryder. Guy stated that what New Zealand is trying to do should also be what the International Trade Union Movement is trying to do. We must think and act globally.Guy went on to address the record profits that big business is returning and the hard task of extracting some of that profit and directing that to workers wage packets.He concluded by stating that it is very hard to get all unions to work globally and work to-wards a global labour market. We need a global strategy.After lunch on day one, we went into workshops for the first two hours, then reported back to the conference on the findings of each workshop.

    After the afternoon smoko, we had a report under the heading of Affiliate Snapshot. This presentation was given by the New Zealand Nurses Or-ganization (NZNO) and dealt with the struggle the nurses had in getting a multi-employ-er agreement in Place.The next section dealt with the remits. There were eight remits which were sent onto the National Af-filiates Council, then we dealt with the rest in order.MUNZ Remit 21 which sought industry-wide agreements was incorporated into Remit 24 under the heading of Indus-try/MECA Bargaining. This remit was carried.The remits seeking full public ownership of strategically im-portant assets was also carried.

    Day twoDay two opened with general business and review discussion.At 9am, the Minister of Labour, Ruth Dyson, addressed the conference.Ruth spoke on local body elec-tions, union density, the low wage campaign, minimum wage campaign, health and safety and many other current issues.After her presentation Ruth fielded questions, before sum-ming up her presentation.The next session was a Runan-ga presentation by Syd Keepa. This was followed by the inau-guration of CTU kaumatua.After morning smoko, we had a Komiti Pasefika presentation.In the next session, we had a Womens Council presentation.In the final session before lunch, we had a presentation from ACTU President Sharan Burrow under the heading of Political Campaigning the Australian Experience.Sharon expanded on Work Choice and a whole host of anti-worker legislation that their current government has imposed on workers in Aus-tralia.Sharon went on to state that even after Australia elects a Labor Government, the ACTU will continue to lobby them over Industrial issues.

    CTU Biennial Conference

    Newly elected CTU President Helen Kelly (third from left) with (from left) CTU Secretary Carol Beaumont, CTU Vice President Richard Wagstaff and CTU Maori Vice President Sharon Clair, at the CTU Biennial Conference 2007

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 13

    After lunch, we went back into workshops and then reported the findings from those work-shops back to the conference.After afternoon smoko, we received a delegation from the Green Party and the Maori Party.This section was conducted in a question and answer forum.There was a wide range of questions that both the delega-tions answered in a positive manner.When Green Party Co-leader Jeanette Fitzsimons summed up, she stated that unions play a major role in New Zealand society and her party looks for-ward to continue their policy of working with unions.The last session of day two was set aside to pay a tribute to Ross Wilson.

    Day threeDay three opened with an ITUC Asia Pacific report from Noriyuki Suzuki.The next session was another affiliates snapshot.In this session we heard reports from the UNITE Union and the National Distribution Union, regarding their latest disputes and what campaigns they are currently involved in.The next session was headed Launch of CTU Political Strategy and Workplace of the Future.These presentations were given by Carol Beaumont, Helen Kelly and Peter Conway.In this section, we dealt with all the difficulties that the trade union movement currently faces.After morning smoko there was an Out @ Work presenta-tion. There were a lot of speakers involved in this session from a wide range of unions.In the next session we had a YUM Presentation.

    All the speakers spoke on the youth rate campaign and other issues that young workers are faced with in the workplace.The next session was an af-filiate snapshot from FINSEC union. There was a good pres-entation on the struggle within the banking industry to get all workers in that industry into their union.The second part of this section was given by the RMTU. The speakers addressed health and safety issues that this un-ion faces, especially within the rail sector.The third part of this section was given by the EPMU.EPMU General Secretary An-drew Little gave the presenta-tion. Andrew gave a report on all the problems that organ-izers face because of the heavy workload that is placed on the organizer. Andrew said that his union has worked hard on a struc-ture to get non-important calls diverted to a call centre so the organizer can be left dealing with the important issues.At this point the delegates carried a letter in support of restoring democracy in Burma.The final session before lunch was used for delegates to con-tinue discussing the remits to conference.After lunch on day three we carried on addressing the remaining remits.After all the remits had been addressed we went into groups for a session on:1. Feedback on political strat-egy.2. What do we want for our future as a movement.3. What is our unions perspec-tive union group discussion.After a lengthly discussion the findings from the groups were reported back to the confer-ence.As you can see from the above we had three full-on days.

    For more information on the NZCTU visit www.union.org.nz


    The circulars returned by the members who ticked vari-ous boxes to indicate areas in which they could participate meant that no elections would be required, as nominations did not exceed vacancies.The inaugural officers of the Maritime Union of New Zea-land VeteransAssociation who will act in a national capac-ity until other branches are formed and elections held are as follows:President: Doug Phillips.Vice President: Eric Dunne.General Secretary: Terry Ryan.Executive: Bill Cunningham, Dave Mora, Barry Prescott, Peter Arnold. The constitution allows for a junior vice president, a treas-urer and an assistant secretary. We would envisage these being filled once other branches are formed and we go national.Meanwhile the secretary will act as secretary/treasurer.Membership continues to grow. Each week the mail brings in new applications from all over the country. At the time of preparing this newsletter the membership currently stands at 81.

    Xmas FunctionThe Local 13 Xmas function will take place at the Maritime Club in Anzac Ave on 21 De-cember 2007 at 1pm.Local 13 has generously issued an invitation to all Veterans Association members to attend as their guests. A wonderful opportunity for the veterans and current mem-bers to mix and mingle in a con-vivial and social atmosphere.All veterans are urged to at-tend as a mark of appreciation to Local 13 for the invitation.Veterans news will feature in each Port News and in the Maritimes occasionally. All members are encouraged to submit stories and photos.Written material is preferred, however we will take oral sto-ries and transcribe them.Previous members widows are welcomed by the Association as are canteen workers etc.

    To date we have only one woman member Peggy Clare. Many will remember Peggy serving them a cold ale at the De Bretts Hotel. Peggy has since married Jack Clare.Wellington Seafarers Branch advised the national executive that they have established a da-tabase of about 40 ex members that they intend to approach re signing up as veteran mem-bers. Meanwhile we have received our first South Island member in Arthur Brace of Westport.Last month the Veterans As-sociation was recognised by the national executive, becom-ing an official appendix with the following resolution being carried unanimously:That having heard a report regarding the formation of the MUNZ Veterans Associa-tion, and taking cognizance of MUNZ policy enacted at the 2006 conference in relationship to veteran membership;Note the endeavours of Local 13 to establish the veterans on a national basis, with the aim to grow to coverage New Zealand wide through branch formation;Therefore this MUNZ national executive recognise and adopts the constitution voted into ex-istence by the initial Veterans meeting at the Point Chevalier RSA in Auckland;Further that the recently elected officials be endorsed as the interim MUNZ Veterans officials to grow the veterans movement throughout the union.The veterans first executive meeting will take place prior to the Local 13 Xmas function on 21 December 2007 in the Local 13 boardroom at midday.Merry Xmas to all Veterans and their families.

    To contact the Veterans Association, write to:Maritime Union of New Zealand Veterans Associationc/o Maritime Union of New Zealand Local 13PO Box 2645Auckland

    Veterans Association Update

  • 14 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    by Garry Parsloe

    Day one, 8 OctoberThe Maritime Union of New Zealand recently sent three national officials to the national council meeting of the Mari-time Union of Australia.National President Phil Adams, National Vice President Garry Parsloe and National Assist-ant General Secretary Russell Mayn attended the meeting, which opened in Sydney on Monday 8 October 2007.After the welcome, there was an election for the presiding officers.The rest of the first morning was taken up with a National Approach Report. This was a full and compre-hensive report on the Patricks dispute, the important issue of being active in the upcoming election, and how important it would be for a Labor Govern-ment to be elected, especially in the area of industrial rela-tions and planning for the next four years.

    There was a report on the MUA national conference due to take place on the 7-11 April 2008. This will be followed by the Mining and Maritime conference meeting on the 14-15 April 2008.There was a report on employ-ment for seafarers in Australia which noted the shortage in the shipping industry, especially in Western Australia.There was a report on the ITF and the ILO. It was good to hear in this section just how much progress has been made in lifting the ITF wage rates that apply to foreign seafarers. This goes some way to making our wage rates and conditions less prohibitive to foreign ship owners and may well assist our union going forward.The report on Your Rights at Work attracted a lengthy discussion, especially with how that campaign fits into the MUA campaign.There was a report on Austral-ian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) activities and the relationship between ACTU and the Australian Labor Party (ALP).

    A report was given on Austral-ian shipping, manning and cur-rent shipping levels and wage and conditions negotiations. A further report on research and planning issues was given just before the lunch break.After the lunch break on day one the meeting continued with the National Approach Report. In this section, MUA National Secretary Paddy Crumlin con-tinued reporting on activities and events the MUA is in-volved in. He expanded on legal topics, including security card issues and the MUA database.Mid-afternoon the national council was given a presen-tation from the MUA and CFMEU on their industrial and marginal seats campaign. The speakers all stressed the importance of linking Your Rights at Work campaign with the campaign to elect a Labor Government. It was also very important that the unions put a major effort into the marginal seats.

    All the speakers were confi-dent that if the unions put the work in, they would see the Labor Party in government. There was a discussion around environmental issues, climate change and other issues that are seen as important in this election.Nearing the end of day one, we had a presentation from ALP deputy leader Julia Gillard. Julia stated that the MUA was a great union that has never backed off when defending its members.Even when the Howard Gov-ernment was attacking them, the MUA stood up and fought back. Julia spoke on how the most environmentally-friendly mode of transport, shipping, is so im-portant at this time in history with all the attention being given to climate change.She also addressed the ques-tion of industrial relations and how there is a real need to give protection to workers. Julia stated that if workers want a collective agreement, then the Labor Government would ensure that this legisla-tion would provide for one.She concluded by stating that legislation would absolutely guarantee that workers could not be attacked for being in a union.In the last session of day one, the council discussed a campaign programme that would involve the whole MUA membership in an all-out effort to elect a Labor Government.

    Day two, 9 OctoberDay two opened with the MUA financial auditors report.After the financial report coun-cil heard an Environmental Report Launch. There was a press release from the MUA which stated that the Australian Institute Study found that a shift from roads to sea freight would deliver cleaner environmental outcomes and assist Australia to meet greenhouse reduction targets. The statement went on to say that the report found that road transport accounts for less than 40% of the domestic freight task, but is responsible for over 80% of freight emissions.

    Maritime Union of Australia national meeting

    Trans Tasman solidarity: MUNZ President Phil Adams, MUNZ Vice President Garry Parsloe, MUA Victoria Deputy Branch Secretary Dave Schleibs, MUA Northern Territory Honorary Branch Secretary Andy Burford, MUA Southern NSW Branch Secretary Gary Keane, and MUNZ Assistant General Secretary Russell Mayn

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 15


    In comparison, shipping ac-counts for 22% of the freight task and only 4% of emissions.This shows us just how much Australian shipping should be part of the solution to meet-ing the challenges of climate change.The next session was headed Hydrocarbons Alliance Re-port. In this session, we heard a report from the Australian Workers Union (AWU).AWU Secretary Bill Shorten stated that the MUA was one of the best little unions around and hits out well above its weight. He went on to talk about the good relationship between the MUA and the AWU. Bill con-cluded by stating that cabotage was something that needs to be promoted because cabotage is the answer.AWU National Vice President Paul Howes was the next speaker to address the council. Paul spoke on organising in the hydrocarbon sector and how important it is now, especially with the massive growth in that area.The next speaker in this sector was MUA Assistant National Secretary Mick Doleman. Mick spoke on union den-sity, organising, FPSOs, ITF and IMO. On the issue of FPSOs, Mick expanded on the campaign to have FPSOs recognised as vessels and not platforms.The last speaker in the session was MUA National Industrial Officer Rod Currie. Rod spoke on manning issues in the hy-drocarbons area, the problems with the FPSOs being deemed to be platforms and union coverage.Just before lunch we had a Sydney Branch report from Secretary Warren Smith.Warren spoke about getting in-formation out to the member-ship by putting out a monthly newspaper, the campaign to elect a Labor Government, the Your Rights at Work com-mittee activities, the closing down of Darling Harbour as a working port, all the organis-ing work that is going on in the Harbour Ferry Boat Section, the activities around APEC, World Maritime Day, May Day, the campaign around Austral-ian shipping and ITF issues.

    After lunch we had a Southern Queensland Branch report from Branch Secretary, Mick Carr.Mick gave a report on manning issues, especially in the cater-ing department. He then spoke on the Your Rights at Work campaign, the MUA Veterans Association and the campaign to elect a Labor Government.The next session was headed Seafarers Training.In this section Mick Doleman addressed the training levels for integrated ratings, the current shortage of integrated ratings in Australia, dredging, towage, bluewater, offshore and the move to train caterers to an integrated rating status.Mick Doleman concluded by thanking MUNZ for their continued support in not only the supply of unionised labour but also for accepting that MUNZ members will return to New Zealand when Australian seafarers become available.At this point I took the oppor-tunity to thank the MUA for their help in placing unem-ployed New Zealand seafarers into work in the Australian Maritime Industry.The next session on day two was headed MUA APHEDA.This session was presented by Peter Jennings of APHEDA and MUA Deputy National Secretary Jim Tannock.Jim spoke on the real need to support this project and asked that all branches and their membership get in behind the project.Next session was headed Membership Project.This session was presented by Jim Tannock. Jim stated that there that there was a need to do some work around unfi-nancial members. Jim went on to explain the best ways to resolve this problem then concluded by explaining how best to keep a running record of branch membership.

    Day three, 10 OctoberDay three opened with a Vic-torian branch report by Branch Secretary Kevin Bracken.Kevin spoke on union ral-lies, APEC, solidarity forums, dredging, local body elections and the campaign to elect a Labor Government.

    He reported on the two deaths in the general and bulk steve-doring section and thanked the branches for the donations to the families of these workers. Following these tragic ac-cidents, the focus now has to be on establishing a code of practice within the stevedoring industry.In regard to dredging, there is going to be a massive dredg-ing programme in Melbourne Harbour and this will create massive employment oppor-tunities.The next report was from the Western Australian Branch which was given by Branch Secretary Chris Cain.Chris addressed the mas-sive explosion of work in the offshore, along with dredging, diving and other small boat work.With all this growth there is a good argument to raise the un-ion profile in Western Australia to ensure union coverage of all this work.Due to the explosion of work in the oil and gas industry, and the infrastructure required over the next 20 years and taking into account the vast area to cover, in some cases 3,000 kilo-metres, the need for another branch official was a matter of some urgency.After smoko, council heard an ACTU report from ACTU Secretary Jeff Lawrence.Jeff stated that the ACTU were working hard to get rid of Work Choices and get rid of the Howard Government.Jeff went on to talk about the importance of marginal seats and the greater campaign to have Labor elected in this cru-cial election.Jeff spoke on ACTU policies and how these policies line up with the Labor Party especially around Work Choice and Your Rights at Work.Jeff concluded by stating how important it was to elect a Labor Government so work-ers can enjoy some relief from Howards Industrial Relations legislation.At this point, Phil, Russell and myself all had an input into the debate, especially around the CTU relationship with the Labour Government and how that impacts on unions and union density.

    [continued on page 29]

  • 16 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz

    On the lineWorkers at the Ports of Auckland picket, 24 October, 2007 Photos by Simon OostermanTo view the full set online, visit www.flickr.com/ndu

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 17

  • 18 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    by Kathy Whelan New Zealand ITF co-ordinatorITF New Zealand became aware of the special arrange-ments that existed in Samoa and Tonga in relation to two vessels, the Forum Samoa II and the Capitaine Tasman, in 2000.The vessels were operating in New Zealand ports and were subject to an ITF inspection of the employment arrangements. Crew salaries were identified as being far too low. The ITF investigated with a commit-ment to increase wages to an acceptable level.

    BackgroundThe Pacific Forum Line was formed in 1976 and at that time two vessels were granted by the German Government, through Hamburg Sud, on a lease to buy arrangement as part of an aid project to Tonga and Samoa.

    ITF Coordinators from Australia (Dean Summers) and New Zealand (Kathy Whelan) on board the Capitaine Tasman in Sydney, October 2007, reporting to the Tongan crew on the achievement of an agreement

    Breakthrough for Pacific seafarers

    Pacific Forum Line is owned by 12 Pacific Island nations, including Samoa and Tonga.

    ITF investigationThe ITF New Zealand carried out extensive investigations with the assistance of Dave Morgan, then President of the New Zealand Seafarers Union.We reported the Samoan situa-tion where the special arrange-ments about the national flag were recognized by the ITF.The New Zealand Inspectorate entered into negotiations with the Samoan Shipping Service for a national flag agreement.This agreement moves the crew pay rates to International Labour Organization mini-mums over a three year period for the Samoan crew of the Forum Samoa II (as reported in the previous issue of the Maritimes).The new agreement came into effect in 2005.

    After lengthy negotiations with the Shipping Corporation of Tonga, and with the help of the ITF Australia Inspectorate, the same agreement was achieved on the Tongan-manned vessel Capitaine Tasman.The monthly salary for an able seaman (AB) from Tonga or Samoa on these two vessels has now moved from US$230 per month to the ILO minimum of US$870 per month. This will be reviewed at the next renewal date 1 October 2008. It has been a long haul but a necessary one. When making submissions to the Government on New Zea-lands relationship with South Pacific countries, we highlight-ed this degree of exploitation in the Oceania region. We urged that the New Zea-land Government ratify the Maritime Labour Convention (also known as the Seafarers Bill of Rights) as a positive way to prevent this exploitation.

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 19


    Womens reportJanita Barton MUNZ Local 13 Membership #0689Firstly I would like to take this opportu-nity to thank Local 13 officials, executive and most of all the membership for the continued support I receive.I recently attended the National Womens NZCTU Biennial Conference held in Wel-lington on 29-30 June. I attended this conference with fellow comrades from Auckland, Wellington and Lyttleton. We had a number of guest speakers over the two days, including Prime Minister Helen Clark, MP Sue Bradford, and mem-bers of the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions and the Australian Council of Trade Unions who spoke on issues we face in the workplace. Even though we were fewer in numbers compared to some other unions that at-tended, we were as usual well represented in all discussions and workshops that affect us in the workplace. Some of the workshops included were low pay, equal employment opportuni-ties, abolishing youth rates, casualisation, work/life balance and promoting educa-tion for women in the workplace and the union.It was refreshing to watch my comrades that had not attended a conference before grow in confidence and knowledge from this experience. They got involved in the workshops and activities and found them to be rewarding and beneficial.Each union was given the opportunity to nominate a representative.I was nominated from MUNZ and I am proud to say that I am now the MUNZ Womens Representative on the NZCTU Womens Council.I look forward to this new experience and chance to represent MUNZ within the NZCTU arena.

    Rank and file women attend NZCTU Biennial Conference Jennifer Neilson MUNZ Local 13 Fullers Group LtdI had the privilege of meeting and join-ing my fellow comrades from Wellington, Lyttleton and Auckland at the NZCTU Biennial Womens Conference held in Wel-lington in June.Working on the Fullers Ferries in Auck-land, I quickly found myself comparing stories with my fellow seafarer comrades Lana, Ebony, Tania and Marian.The more we spoke, the more I discovered we have the same sort of barriers in our workplace environments.All aside, the conference had a colourful array of speakers, including Prime Minis-ter Helen Clark, MP Sue Bradford, NZCTU Secretary Carol Beaumont, and NZCTU President Helen Kelly.When our guests had all spoken we got down to business in workshops and the same issues kept arising.These included low pay, equal employ-ment opportunities, removing youth rates, casualisation, work/life balance and promoting and educating women, not only in the workplace, but within the union as well.Our ACTU speaker informed us of the con-ditions our comrades have to work under with the Tory Government in Australia. Its either work as I say and do or you dont have a job. All of us at the conference were shocked to hear of the conditions people had to work under. It was basically no choice! This opened our eyes and made us realise it can easily happen in New Zealand with a change of government. The Burmese union representative gave an amazing speech on their struggle for women in the workplace and their basic rights. It was great to go down to Wellington, meet my fellow comrades and visit Union House while I was there. It was exciting sitting through the remits session and I was totally captivated by our guest speakers from overseas. Friendships were made and it was brain-storming in overload. Sharing everyones experiences in the workshops was the key to the conference. I hope to meet more comrades at my next conference.

    We want your stuff.The Maritimes needs your photos, letters, reports, news, views and opinions.Its your magazine!If there is something youd like to see in the Maritimes, send it to the Editor:

    Mail PO Box 27004, Wellington, New Zealand Email [email protected](09) 9251125

  • 20 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    by Garry Parsloe National Vice PresidentOn 12 October 2007, the ITF held the ITF Seafarers Section Maritime Safety Com-mittee meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark.

    Day oneAfter the opening address we discussed issues from the last meeting.We then went into the status of the Interna-tional Maritime Organization (IMO) sub-committee monitors and deputies, before discussing the ITF work within the IMO. In this section we addressed issues sur-rounding asbestos, inert gas, safety strops on lifeboats, safety when testing lifeboats, maritime environment protection and the major issue of not allowing seafarers to do dockers work.After morning smoko we went into Agenda Item 4, Maritime Safety.This section was around accidents involv-ing lifeboats. There seems to be far too many accidents over the on-load release stocks on davit-type lifeboats.There needs to be some immediate action around this in an effort to halt all acci-dents in this area. The manufacturers have to-date stated that they are unaware of problems with their equipment.They say they have had no or little feed-back, and consider the problem is training and the human element. They are unable to standardise the equipment, particularly on the on-load release hook.The shipping industry is of the opinion that the manufacturers could do far more to design a standardised, failsafe on-load release hook.

    They say manufacturers should take more responsibility for the safe operation of equipment they supply and look to make the maximum out of a regulated world-wide servicing system approved by them.There is also the hotly-debated issue of the benefits or problems related to second-ary safety devices, such as pins or strops, to prevent lifeboats being accidentally released during drills or maintenance. There is disagreement as to whether they should even be fitted, and should they be in place at all times until the final stage of launching.The second part of this section was around the revised guidance on the ISM Code. Last year, an IMO expert working group, following a survey of seafarers, amongst others, decided that the International Safe-ty Management (ISM) Code was under-stood, generally accepted and successful. We registered our concern at both the way this process had been conducted and the relevance of the conclusions. That is not to say that we do not consider there are many positive aspects to the code, but our feedback indicates varying standards of application and still far too much paperwork. There are two initiatives currently pro-posed at the IMO in respect to the code:clarification of the guidelines for the op-erational implementation of the ISM Code by companies, and training and minimum competency requirements for the role of the designated person under ISM Code.The final part of the section was on the status of FPSOs and FSUs. Since 2000, the IMO has been amending the status of floating production storage and offloading facilities (FPSOs) and floating storage units (FSUs) so they would not be classed as tankers under MARPOL. This would also apply to vessels that are expected to disconnect and operate under their own power. Unfortunately, national administrators have chosen to write them out of their Maritime Acts as a ship and to include them under their petroleum legislation as a platform. This has in many cases caused the removal of the maritime crew and the management no longer has to consider the vessel in respect to its safe operation as a ship.De-manning these vessels of maritime crew and by-passing the safety require-ments of a ship is clearly the intent.

    The ITF do not agree and consider that any vessel that can be defined as a ship under a convention with normal responsibility of master and crew must comply with all minimum safety requirements, operation and manning.After lunch, we had a presentation, then a debate around safety issues on ferry boats/vessels in various countries around the globe. There have been a large number of major accidents with ferries around the world but to-date there are still a lot of countries that have not applied proper safety stand-ards onboard these vessels. Both the USA and Canada were vocal in their disappointment over the lack of safety standards in the ferry industry.The second matter after lunch was on training and watch-keeping.Existing procedures under ILO Conven-tion Number 74 provide for a period of sea service of 36 months reducing to 24 months where an approved course has been followed. Given the growing shortage of seafar-ers, it is important that new seafarers are attracted to a career at sea and are able to achieve the appropriate levels of compe-tency within an acceptable time frame so as to increase the number of seafarers world-wide. For the above reason, the rules will now provide for a reduction in the minimum period of seagoing service required to qualify as an AB in the deck department from 24 to 14 months, while specifying the necessary competences.While the above sounds good and may well be good for a lot of countries with a shortage of seafarers, it does not suit New Zealand to cheapen the AB ticket by reduc-ing the sea time. All the above does is create a band aid solution by allowing anyone who gets their feet wet and with STCW 95 to be ac-ceptable. This in turn slows the process for the youth of New Zealand to come into the Maritime Industry.The last agenda item on the first day was identified areas for the STCW 95 review.The main areas of discussion were around certificates and endorsements, medi-cal standards, recognition of certificates, revalidation of certifications and the use of simulators.

    [continued on page 31]

    ITF Seafarers Section meeting

    Photo by www.flickr.com/vividbreezeReproduced under Creative Commons license Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.0 Generic

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 21


    Iranian trade unionist jailed Transport workers around the world have condemned a five year sentence handed down to Iranian trade union leader, Mansour Osanloo.Osanloo has been in detention in Tehran since 10 July and was only briefly released in October to undergo urgent medical treatment on his eye.International Transport Workers Federa-tion General Secretary David Cockroft says, For two years, Mansour Osan-loo has fought back against the Iranian regimes brutality. Now they are trying to crush him with spurious accusations of en-dangering national security and criticising the regime. We know the world knows that Mansours only crime in their eyes is to have asserted his right to belong to a trade union.Osanloo is President of the trade union representing workers of the Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company, which has been violently repressed by the Iranian authori-ties. He has been made a particular target for imprisonment and brutal attacks.The ITF has called for the release of all imprisoned trade unionists in Iran and freedom of association for Iranian workers. Since issuing the statement, the ITF has received reports that brother union-ist Ebrahim Madadi has also received a two-year prison sentence and that another representative of the bus workers union has been summoned to court.

    For more information and to send a campaign email to the Iranian Government, view the following website:http://www.itfglobal.org/campaigns/freeosanloo.cfm

    Mansour Osanloo, President of the Tehran Bus Workers Union, visited the ITF and ITUC in June 2007 in London. This is the first time that a trade union leader from Iran attended the meetings of these organisations.

    by Helen Kelly CTU PresidentThe Electoral Finance Bill will come back before the house later this week.The problems with the bill have been well documented. In some cases, these problems were significant, such as those affecting the legitimate role of third party advocacy groups. Like many other organisations, we proposed amendments to the definitions relating to third party election activity so that they more carefully targeted electoral speech, rather than wider political activity. Amendments put up by the select commit-tee have gone a long way to fixing these problems.However, recent debate over the Electoral Finance Bill has ranged from the sensi-ble to the almost hysterical, including a dedicated campaign against the bill by one newspaper.Due to problematic drafting, the public focus has inevitably been on the problems with the bill. But what has been largely absent from recent public debate have been the very real reasons why we needed change in the first place.There was a high level of public interest in reform following the last election when we saw millions in secret funding to the two main political parties and a third party spending over $1 million seeking to discredit two political parties and clearly influence the election outcome.And because of the devious actions of that third party, we have this year been considering scrutiny of funding and activi-ties of political parties and third parties in election year.We accepted the need to provide more transparency and limit the potential for unlimited parallel election campaigns, and so supported moves to better regulate the role of third parties. The view of unions was that the princi-ples driving our electoral finance reform should be about limiting the undue influ-ence of wealthy interests on the electoral process, and providing for transparency in the funding and activities of political actors, including third parties.Unions are upfront about their political activity, and many of our goals for work-ing people can only be achieved through involvement in the political process.And we defend the right of all groups to have a say in issues that affect them, including through participation in the electoral process.

    But there is every reason to be very cautious about defending the rights of wealthy interests to spend millions of dol-lars procuring electoral objectives.As the CTU has often quoted recently, international financier George Soros has warned that perhaps the greatest threat to freedom and democracy in the world today comes from the formation of unholy alliances between government and busi-ness.Nicky Hagers well-researched and un-challenged analysis of the National Party funding and strategies in his book last year provided clear evidence of an urgent need to reform our election funding laws to, in the words of the 1986 Royal Commission on the Electoral System, limit the poten-tial for corruption by interests with access to substantial funds.I have a level of suspicion of those who call this bill an attack on democracy under the guise of freedom of speech, too. Freedom of expression or freedom of speech through expensive mass advertising are not freedoms that every person can exercise.The average New Zealand income is around $34,000, and so a third party spending limit of three-and-a-half times that amount needs to be seen in this light.Furthermore, following the select commit-tee amendments, this limit is only when they are calling on people to vote for or against a candidate or party or parties.It is encouraging that there is now going to be some movement on anonymous dona-tions and secret trusts. There was a strong public expectation of reform in this area.We dont think electoral reform should stop here. Public funding should stay under active consideration. It difficult to see why the campaigns of political parties should be privately funded, with the cor-responding advantage (and risk of undue influence) to parties backed by corporates and millionaires.Public funding of elections would build on the existing funding that we all already accept as a given, through Vote Parliamen-tary Service and through the extensive broadcasting allocations.We also think a cap on donations to politi-cal parties should be considered, alongside consideration of public funding. It is far preferable to front up with a small amount of money and prevent parties from access-ing millions in secret and corporate money, through both a ban on anonymous dona-tions, and consideration of reasonable caps on political donations.

    For more information, view this website: http://union.org.nz/electionfunding

    Electoral finance reform should limit the undue influence of wealth

  • 22 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    Auckland Local 13 by Russell MaynIt doesnt seem that long ago when I was writing the 2006 Maritimes Christmas article.This has been my first year in office as Assistant General Sec-retary and I have found it both challenging and enjoyable. There is one thing you can be sure of in our industry, no two days are the same.On some issues we have been successful and others I guess they will keep for next year. Nationally, we are currently focused on the dispute in the Port of Napier and protecting the jobs of our members.These workers are under at-tack from the Port of Napier through contracting out.This issue raises the question of job security for stevedores throughout New Zealand and is not just a local issue confined to the Port of Napier.I believe workers in our indus-try are taken for granted, work-ing as they do 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The cost to family life and the hazards our members are exposed to on a daily basis seem to be disre-garded.Health and safety is improving and hopefully by the end of 2008 we will have made signifi-cant advances throughout the maritime industry to reduce the number of accidents.

    There are still some employ-ers who are willing to turn a blind eye to safety to increase the profit margin and make the company look good.I have some sympathy for the stevedoring companies who are trying to maintain a well-trained workforce. The problem they face is pretty simple in an industry without minimum standards for train-ing in place. If they invest in their employ-ees and in health and safety they lose their contracts to a cheaper, casualised workforce.Companies cannot walk away from their social responsibili-ties and drive the standard of stevedoring down purely to increase their bottom line. I dont believe they would like to be treated with the same indifference as they treat our members, here today and gone tomorrow. What a great time for the Port Company to send this message out to our members in the Port of Napier:Thanks for all the hours you have worked and the times that you have sacrificed family commitments to work a vessel but dont come back in the New Year and by the way hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.Perhaps the Port of Napier has missed its opportunity, they should have been innovative and reintroduced the Chop-ping Block.

    There is nothing like a hungry workforce to improve produc-tivity and bring some disci-pline back to the workplace. And dont forget it might be a good idea to advertise as a Port of Convenience, as I am sure this will attract some extra trade into the region. Rest assured, the fight to protect the work of bona fide union members in the Port of Napier is not something that the Maritime Union of New Zealand will walk away from. The demographics of disputes of this nature have changed. These disputes are no longer fought just at a local level or at a national level. The union movement has realised the importance of internationalism and this will play an pivotal role over the coming months in the struggle to protect workers from indis-criminate job losses.Many good campaigns have been fought by the trade union movement throughout the year, including the Progres-sive lockout, the campaign to remove Youth Rates, recogni-tion for a collective agreement in the health sector and many more.So we have a lot to be proud of from the past year.The Sea Change Strategy has seen the Government take a proactive stance and look to the future in making Coastal Shipping a viable transport alternative to land transport.

    There are many positives in establishing a coastal shipping service and some of the gains will be long-term. There is no doubt that this form of moving cargo has long term benefits for the environ-ment. It will pose some chal-lenges for everyone involved. Firstly, we will have to get the vessels to move the cargo and convince users that this is the best option. Secondly, we will have to train young New Zealanders as seafarers to replace and enlarge our current workforce. I have no doubts that all of the barriers in place can be overcome, and in 10 years time someone else will be writing an article expounding the benefits of a healthy New Zealand coastal shipping service.The annual Interport Sports Tournament will be held in Whangarei next year and this will be the first time to my knowledge that we will have competitors from the Maritime Union of Australia involved in the tournament. I look forward to seeing every-one there for what has always been an enjoyable week. I feel confident that Auckland will excel, but I am sure the other ports will have a different take on this.Next year, all going well, will see the Northern Region up and running. We believe this will provide a better service for the membership. It will mean some changes for all the branches/locals involved but will create a stronger and more unified union presence on land and at sea.In closing, I would like to take this opportunity to wish all those involved in the union movement throughout the world and especially the mem-bers and families of the Mari-time Union of New Zealand a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year.My thanks to all the office staff locally and nationally for their assistance during the year.Touch One, Touch All

    Picket line, Ports of Auckland, October 2007(photo by Simon Oosterman)

  • www.munz.org.nz The Maritimes | December 2007 | 23


    Auckland Seafarers:local body elections by Garry Parsloe, Auckland Seafarers Secretary National Vice PresidentOn 24 September 2007, the Auckland Delegates meeting heard an address from Mike Lee.Mike Lee is Chairman of the Auckland Regional Council. He was a former ships officer and is a passionate conser-vationist. Mike holds an MSc (Hons).During his three years as chair-man, Mike has worked hard to reduce ARC rates increases and restore the credibility of regional government.Key achievements of ARC under his leadership include the buy back of 100% public ownership of Ports of Auck-land, acquisition of four superb new coastal regional parks, including a new headland park at Wynyard Point, and persuading the Government to electrify rail.Mike has fought to improve public transport, reopen the Onehunga rail line and extend train services to Helensville. Under Mikes leadership, the ARC unanimously rejected the poorly conceived stadium on the waterfront.Mike is concerned that councils need to control costs much better and be more accountable to ratepayers. He believes in keeping publicly owned assets and that councils are there to serve the public, not the other way round.

    Chairman of the Auckland Regional Council Mike Lee meets with members of the Maritime Union of New Zealand Auckland Seafarers Branch, 24 September 2007

    Merchant Navy Day: The Auckland Merchant Navy Association held its Merchant Navy Day on Sunday 2 September 2007.The day was held in remembrance of the merchant seafarers who gave their lives in service for their country during two World Wars and the many conflicts in which they served.The service was held at the Merchant Navy Memorial in Teal Park.At the service it was heartening to see the large turn out of current and retired seafarers especially those from our union.Pictured from left to right are Jimmy Ryder, Mario OMerovic, Garry Parsloe and Albie Reid

  • 24 | The Maritimes | December 2007 www.munz.org.nz


    Auckland Seafarers: All China Federation of Trade Unions Delegation by Garry Parsloe Auckland Seafarers SecretaryThe Auckland Seafarers Branch hosted an All China Federation of Trade Unions Delegation in Auckland from 3-7 Septem-ber 2007.This delegation was from the Zhejiang Provincial Trade Unions and was headed by their Vice Chairman, Chen Din Xin.The highlight of the visit was on the after-noon of 6 September where we received the whole delegation into the Auckland Union rooms to swap information regard-ing the trade union movement in our respective countries.This rather large delegation met with As-sistant General Secretary Russell Mayn, Local 13 President Denis Carlisle, Auck-land Seafarers President John ONeill, Lo-cal 13 delegate Peter Quedley, and myself.The information that we shared will help establish on-going dialogue which will in turn lead to international benefits to the union movement in both countries.

    ACFTU delegates meet with maritime unionists, Auckland, 6 September 2007

    New Plymouthby Ryan CoxFirst off, I would like to apologize for no entry last issue.Work has been fairly steady here. Week-ends are seemingly non-existent, which leaves me wondering whether the ship-ping companies have it planned this way. On 24 November, we were visited by the Maersk Duffield, which brought large interest from the public, since it was 100 metres longer and twice the weight of any previous vessel the port has seen. In the past six months, we have also seen the retirement of two more respected un-ion men, Nev Rowlands (#225) and Peter Cox (#57). Their experience in the industry will not be replaced easily. Both are happy with their retirement and are fully supported by the rest of our members. We wish them all the best.One issue we have experienced a great deal of trouble with is the standard of gear on the Tasman Orient Line. Most vessels to visit have slowly been im-proving, except for the Tasman Endeavour, which seems to have got worse. The twist locks have been painted yellow on the top instead of the bottom, resulting in them being put in upside down. Also, on closer inspection, there seem to be two different types of very similar locks, one of which being harder to release as the lever is very short. Both types also seem to have a common failing when the spreader is landed on top of the box. They can snap shut again caus-ing a fanning effect when stacked.Any feedback on this subject would be greatly appreciated.

    Wellington Waterfrontby John Whiting

    CentrePortLengthy multi union discussions with the Wellington Port Company aimed at negotiating a retirement policy have not reached a point of acceptability by the membership. The problem of a satisfactory arrangement to deal with a proportionately large older workforce will not go away. The company have reaffirmed their desire for a drug and alcohol policy and this will required our careful and vigilant input.

    Golden Bay CementThe collective agreement covering this work area has been renewed for a one-year term, with a wage increase acceptable to our members working at the silos.

    Wellington Port Cold StoresMembers at this work site have endorsed the renewal of their collective agreement for a two-year term, with a wage increase now and at the first anniversary. Good news for the cold store members has been the announcement of the sale of the business to Taylor Preston, a local export meat company, with the management stay-ing with the current provider. This removes the earlier concerns of job losses if a blast-freezing contract was not renewed. The hope is rather of new ton-nage being channelled through by the new owners.