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New Zealand’s first tech worker union

25 Oct 18

For the first time, Aotearoa New Zealand has a union focusing solely on workers in the technology space.

The Aotearoa Tech Union, launching today, represents workers of any employer across all areas of tech - whether they’re in a tech company, or a tech role in any type of organisation.

Technology workers from around New Zealand are coming together in response to the rapid growth of the sector in the country.

While some workers in this sector can be well-compensated, many are not - and most are subject to difficult working conditions, unstable or unpredictable working hours, and low job security.

Early research by the ATU shows that people working in the sector are most concerned by:

  • unequal treatment of women, Māori, and minorities,

  • pay transparency and pay equity,

  • unfair, unsafe, and illegal behaviour from employers, and

  • unfair working conditions, including excessive working hours and long on-call duties

Kate Pearce, a computer security consultant based in Wellington, is one of the founding members of the new union and its co-leader.

“Our challenges are best addressed by a dedicated union, as the tech space has unique concerns and constant change. By the time a job is well understood, it’s already been superseded,” Pearce says.

“We need an advocate for our interests no matter what the future holds for our skills, or which employer we go to.”

The ATU is ready for anyone who works in a tech job or for a technology company.

Technology is going to be the future of this country, and working people in this sector are ready to make sure that New Zealand is one of the best places in the world to be a technology worker.

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