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Meat Strike Responsibilities

Greetings Readers

In a world populated by professional negotiators and public relations people, guided by employment legislation, and operating in an environment where arbitration is now accepted as the normal last resort in the work place the ransom/blackmail tactics of the supposedly professional veterinarians union is a contradiction.

What is the barrier to MAF and its employees arriving at a negotiated employment agreement like the rest of the business community does? Why was this particular contract left unresolved for such a long period, seemingly waiting for a time to milk the maximum from the system?

Much of the criticism for todays farce must lie with the MAF managers. They are the executives delegated with the responsibility of providing the verification service. A monopoly service that is now at fault because it cannot fulfill its contractual obligations to the meat exporting industry. Also a service that is paid for by the industry not by the state.

In normal commerce a service provider who does not perform according their contract is terminated and sued for the damages incurred. Why should MAF VA continue to retain the rights to provide this service when they clearly have failed to organise and manage their responsibilities?

The insidious transfer of the costs of MAF's employment incompetence to meat producers is unacceptable. The pompous protestations of the ministers that they cannot intervene, if not in resolving the immediate losses caused by the strike proceeding, at least by putting in place a structure that ensures that the parties have to solve their differences by negotiation rather than strike. After all it seems the Employment Relations Act stops the intervention but also permits the strike action

The country would not tolerate a strike by immigration officers shutting down border crossings by travellers for three weeks or more. So why should a similar action by the certifying authorities be allowed to stop the flow of meat to overseas markets because of the discontent of a few salaried veterinarians unwilling to use negotiation tools to come to an agreement on their employment terms.

This damned playing field is still not level

Good farming

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