Union Says Ports Of Auckland Management Is Out Of Touch And Isolated

In the latest chapter of the Ports of Auckland industrial dispute, the Maritime Union of New Zealand (MUNZ) has again hit out at port management, describing them isolated and out of touch.

MUNZ President Gary Parsloe said the debate regarding the Port expansion is an example of the bull-headedness that the workers at the port are faced with.

The "take it or leave it" attitude of the port management has extended from their own workforce, and is now evident in an agenda to privatise and expand the port regardless of public concerns, he said.

It is recognised by MUNZ that this issue must be worked through in a democratic way to find a negotiated solution which includes sharing the port.

"We have to share the waterfront in Auckland, it can be used creatively to run the Port and so that recreational users can enjoy the waterfront," Mr Parlsloe said.

"The Port is single minded in its plans, it is basically saying stuff the workers and stuff the city."   

Mr Parsloe added that Ports of Auckland management's actions have threatened to destroy the relationships that underpin the future of the port.

"This is a port management and a CEO who has spent months bagging his own business, running it down, saying it was doomed. But at the same time, POAL expansion plans show it is a port whose future is assured."

On the other hand, Port management have claimed that the Port will lose business without casualising the workforce even though over the last 20 years, container growth has averaged 6.74% growth.

MUNZ have argued the case and have requested to let the people of Auckland review the plans for the Port.

"We believe that the decision on issues like port expansion, privatisation and outsourcing should not be left with a self-interested management cabal pursuing their own opaque agendas," Mr Parsloe said.