WHAT ARE MY RIGHTS IN THE WORKPLACE?

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Your minimum rights in the workplace are guaranteed to you by law. This means that they can not be taken away from you by your employer. Your employer can not ask you to sign away your minimum rights in an employment contract and they can not decide who gets them and who doesn't. When it comes to the minimum rights of workers, all workers are entitled to them. 

Employment Contracts

Sometimes called an employment agreement, lays out all of the terms and conditions of your employment and helps you understand what your responsibilities are to your employer. This helps to minimise any misunderstandings and if any do arise then you and your employer can refer to this document to clarify things.

Minimum Wage

If you are aged 16 years or over then you are entitled to receive the minimum wage for every hour that you work. The current minimum wage is $22.75. Even if you are working at a ‘piece rate’ your employer needs to ensure that your wages are topped up to at least the minimum wage for every hour you work. 

There is no minimum wage for workers under 16.

Meal & Rest Breaks

working can be hungry work sometimes, that's why you are entitled to a meal and rest break.If you work an 8 hour shift then you are entitled to two paid 10 minute rest breaks and one unpaid 30 minute meal break. The number of rest and meal breaks you are entitled to may differ if you work more less hours.

Public Holidays

Each year you are entitled to take off 11 public holidays on full pay. Of course if you work for a company or organisation that needs staff during these times then you may be required to work…

Working Public Holidays

 that would normally be a day of work for you, then your employer must pay you time and a half (1.5 times your normal hourly rate) plus give you a day off in lieu.  

 Sick Leave

Once you have worked for six months or more at the same job or meet the ‘hours worked’ test you will be entitled to take 10 paid sick leave days off. Your employer will specify any criteria around how these will be taken and what if any evidence for being sick is required. 

 

Hours worked test means that you have worked for your employer for:

  • An average of 10 hours per week

  • At least one hour in every week or 40 hours in every month

Bereavement Leave

You are entitled to take up to 3 days of bereavement leave for the death of your spouse, partner, sibling, child, parent or grandparent or your partner/spouse's parents. You are also entitled to one day of bereavement leave for the death of any other person not mentioned in the above list

Bereavement Leave

You are entitled to take up to 3 days of bereavement leave for the death of your spouse, partner, sibling, child, parent or grandparent or your partner/spouse's parents. You are also entitled to one day of bereavement leave for the death of any other person not mentioned in the above list

Annual Leave

Once you have been working for your employer for 12 months you are entitled to receive up to 4 weeks of paid annual leave. Your total entitlement will depend on the number of days and hours that you work. Your employer should discuss with you how this is calculated to ensure that you receive your correct entitlement.

Traveling

Parental Leave

You are entitled to receive up to 12 months of parental leave and parental leave payments to care for a newborn baby. A female employee’s spouse may also be able to take parental leave if they have all or part of the birth mothers parental leave transferred to them.  

Other Leave

If you are affected by (and not the perpetrator of) family violence you are entitled to receive uo 10 days of paid  leave per year. You may also request a short-term flexible working arrangement from your employer that may last up to 2 months. 

Discrimination

Whether you are already working or about to start a new job, your employer may discriminate against you in hiring, firing, paying, training, or promoting you because of your, ethnic origin, race, gender, race, sexual orientation, marital or family status, age, religious or political beliefs, if you have a disability or if you are part of or considering joining or taking part in a union and their actives. 

Trial Periods

You can only be placed on a trial period if your employer employees 19 people or less. Trial periods are voluntary. They must be agreed to in writing and negotiated in good faith as part of your employment agreement before you start work.  

Health & Safety

Employers must provide you with a  safe workplace, proper training, supervision and equipment. They must also identify, assess and eliminate risks and hazards and investigate any health and safety incidents. Your employer must also report serious injuries to Work Safe New Zealand.

Redundancy

Employers will need to discuss with you any proposals that are likely yo have a negative effect on your working conditions. This includes changes to your current employment contract, such as a shortening your hours.   

Employment Problems

Employers will need to discuss with you any proposals that are likely yo have a negative effect on your working conditions. This includes changes to your current employment contract, such as a shortening your hours.   

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