Home' Napier Mail : January 30th 2013 Contents 14 NAPIER MAIL, JANUARY 30, 2013
At the Citizens Advice Bureau, we regularly get enquiries from
employees, and occasionally employers, about problems to do
with the workplace. At the Bureau, we have the Department
of Labour booklets covering all the important information for
both employees and employers. Feel free to call by the Bureau
in Clive Square and collect any of these. Or ring us on 835
9664 and we will mail them out to you.
Here are just a few examples of the types of questions we get
asked and the answers we might give:-
I've just started working for a small local business. The boss
told me what my wage rate would be and the hours of work.
But, am I entitled to anything in writing?
The Employment Relations Act 2000, administered by the
Department of Labour, requires your employer to give you a
written employment agreement for signing before you start
work. This applies for every employee, whether permanent or
casual, full-time or part-time, to jointly sign with the employer
an Employment Agreement. Either an individual agreement or a
collective agreement (one involving the Union).
You must be given a copy of this document which includes: your
pay rate; job description; hours and times of work; holidays and
leave (sick, annual, statutory etc.); breaks; and most importantly,
it will set out the steps to be taken for resolving problems, should
they arise. If you've mislaid your Agreement, ask the employer
for a copy.
After 6 weeks working with the same employer, I've been told
to fnish up because my employment was on a trial basis, and
the boss says it hasn't worked out. Can they do this?
Employment for a trial period of up to 90 days is only permissible
if agreed to, in writing, by both parties prior to commencement of
employment. Trial period employees can be terminated before
the end of the trial period without any comeback against the
employer for unjustifed dismissal. But they are entitled to other
rights and protections like minimum wage rates, discrimination,
I've been working for my present employer for 10 months and
am not enjoying the job, so can I just leave?
First check your Employment Agreement, as it may stipulate
a period of Notice that you should give. If no Notice is specifed,
try and give at least 2 weeks if your departure is likely to cause
We cannot over-emphasise the importance of leaving a job on
good terms because any prospective new employer is very likely
to want to contact your previous boss/s. The telling question to
ask a former boss is always "if you had a suitable vacancy, would
you be prepared to employ him/her again? If not, why not?"
Retaining your good reputation as a worker is so important for
your future employability.
The boss has called me to a meeting tomorrow. I think they're
trying to get rid of me. What should I do?
It would be unusual for such a request to come out of the blue.
You must surely have had warnings, unless it's something really
serious involving alleged dishonesty or other serious misconduct.
Employment Agreements usually specify what constitutes serious
misconduct and that, if serious misconduct is proven, instant
dismissal will almost certainly follow.
Employers and employees are obliged to deal with each other
fairly, reasonably and in good faith eg if there are concerns about
work performance, it is expected that employees will be given all
reasonable additional training and assistance to improve and meet
the requirements of the job.
So what should happen when an employer is dissatisfed with
a worker for any reason, other than serious misconduct?
The worker should be clearly told of the employer's concerns
and be given all reasonable assistance and time to rectify matters.
If there is still concern, a written warning should follow clearly
explaining the employer's concerns. If this doesn't achieve the
desired result, then the employee might expect to be given notice
of dismissal -- the period of notice being in accordance with the
An employee believes, for any reason, that their employer has
not treated them correctly eg unjustifed dismissal, or any
action which disadvantages the employee. What rights are
The frst step should be to gather together your Employment
Agreement and any material relating to matter. Record everything
that has happened, including names and dates so you are as certain
as possible of all the relevant details. You don't want to be tripped
up on anything.
Then try and sort things informally with your employer, in
as friendly a manner as possible - thereby preserving your good
reputation. Whatever the outcome, you will still be hoping your
present boss might speak well of you, if contacted by another
If you belong to a Union, be sure to get the local representative
involved from the outset. Union offcials are usually very
experienced and qualifed in all matters involving industrial
relations. Also there are specialist employment lawyers and other
advocates who will happily assist you, for a fee.
The Employment Relations Act gives all employees the right
to pursue a Personal Grievance if they believe they have been
mistreated by the employer. Your Employment Agreement should
explain the process. Essentially, it is a formal letter you must write
to the employer within 90 days of the event, in which you clearly
detail your concerns. And most importantly, you state what you
believe the needs to happen to fx things. Give the employer a
date by which you would ask to receive their reply.
If these actions are unsuccessful in resolving things to the
partys' satisfaction, the Act provides further steps involving:-
of Labour's Mediation Service
The Employment Relations Authority
- The Employment Court
If you need any further help about anything at all, please don't
hesitate to contact us at the Napier Citizens Advice Bureau on
835 9664 or call free on 0800 367 222. Or drop in and see us at
the Bureau in the Napier Community Rooms, Memorial Square
(opposite Breakers Restaurant). We are only too happy to help.
By CAROLYN VEEN
APRIL AT THE
Thursday 4: Organ Re-dedication
Friday 5: Opening Recital. Olivier
Latry -- Titular Organist at Notre
Dame, Paris, will give the first of
two opening recitals, 8pm.
Saturday 6: The Colours of the
Organ illustrated lecture by Gary
Bowler and Vincent James, 4pm.
Tuesday 9: Second opening
recital. Malcolm Archer, former
organist and director of music at St
Paul's Cathedral, London, 8pm.
Tickets for the recitals will be
available from TicketDirect in
one of the pipes for the
At the altar: Scaffolding takes up most of the altar space at the Waiapu
Cathedral in Napier to make room for the rebuilt organ extension.
St John s Cathedral organ has
arrived back in Napier almost 12
months to the day after it was
sent to Timaru in January 2012
for a major overhaul and rebuild.
When the South Island Organ
Company, SOIC, started the
highly-intricate work on the dis-
mantled organ a year ago, manag-
ing director John Hargraves said
the project was an exhilarating
release from the horrors of
destruction in Christchurch.
We were highly charged to pro-
duce an exciting instrument,
which is now among the largest of
such divisions in the country . . .
we literally pulled out all the
stops, Mr Hargreaves said.
He expects the six-week instal-
lation of all 3816 pipes to be com-
pleted in March.
The new organ console we
made is now mobile on the floor of
the cathedral, instead of fixed in
the north loft. It will be connected
to the pipes by an Ethernet cable
to a dedicated computer system.
The pipes will sound, as they
always have, by air being blown
Some of the organ s pipes, pre-
viously hidden, will be on open
display as a feature.
Mr Hargreaves said the
addition of a fourth keyboard
honoured the memory of the for-
mer 1907 Dodd Organ, destroyed
in the 1931 earthquake.
At the moment the altar space
is filled with the company s crafts-
men on scaffolding, making room
for the expanded organ.
Moritz Fassbender, on the com-
pany s installation team, said
there would be more work to do
once the pipes were in place.
It squiteabigjob. . . we
should be able to finish the instal-
lation in a few weeks time and
then someone will come in and
voice the pipes, one by one, to
make them all sound the way
they re supposed to sound.
Waiapu Cathedral dean Helen
Jacobi said the time had come for
major work on the organ after 35
It involved cleaning 35 years of
dust and dirt, re-adjusting the
3000 pipes, overhauling the pipe
mechanism and sound boards,
and adding a fourth manual key-
board and its associated new pipe-
She said April would be a busy
month for the cathedral, with an
organ re-dedication service and
two opening recitals.
We are thrilled to have attrac-
ted two of the world s leading
organists [Olivier Latry and Mal-
colm Archer] to play for the open-
ing recitals. It is a testament to
the quality of the rebuilt and
expanded organ, she said.
The Waiapu Cathedral has been
fundraising for the past three
years, and Dean Jacobi said the
fund was only $80,000 short of
getting to the $745,000 target.
Links Archive January 23rd 2013 February 13th 2013 Navigation Previous Page Next Page