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To: Government MPs

We Need Pay Parity Funded Through Collective Agreements

We Need Pay Parity Funded Through Collective Agreements

ECE Teachers have been calling for pay parity with other teachers for more than a decade. It is time to recognise that a teacher is a teacher is a teacher, no matter the age of the children they teach or the setting they teach in.

Last year, the government agreed with us and funded an initial first step. This was a huge win that came about because of the hard work of thousands of ECE teachers across the country. Labour made a manifesto commitment to invest $600 million in parity over the next four years, which we welcome. Unfortunately, it's now been more than six months since the election and ECE Teachers still earn up to 31% less than their colleagues and we've yet to see any plan to deliver pay parity in full. In addition, when the extra funding was delivered last year to employers to cover the cost of the minimum attestation rate increase, very little of it ended up going into teachers' pockets.

We have a solution to this - collective agreements. There are a number of collective agreements that already exist within the ECE sector, including the Kindergarten Teachers Collective Agreement, the ECE Collective Agreement, and several smaller agreements. Funneling funding to employers who are part of these agreements means that the government can be sure funding will end up in teachers' pay, rather than in shareholder profits. It would also encourage employers to sign up to collective agreements that provide better terms and conditions for teachers.

This is a quick and effective solution to fund pay parity, while ensuring quality is prioritised and money is accounted for. This petition asks that every collective agreement in ECE be funded at the same level as the Kindergarten agreement, so that centres can cover the cost of pay parity and the government can be confident all the money gets where it should - into teachers' pockets.

We have hope that as a government who has already committed to delivering pay parity, you will do the right thing and act now to fix the pay gap.

Signed,

Early Childhood Teachers and Concerned Community Members of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Why is this important?

Pay parity will keep teachers in ECE, where there is currently a huge shortage due to the low pay rates and poor conditions across much of the sector. Ultimately, this benefits no one more than tamariki. Teachers' working conditions are children's learning conditions.

Funding all collective agreements at the same levels will mean that centres where there is already a collective employment agreement between employers and employees will be able to reach pay parity, and the government will have accountability over where funding goes. This action will also provide a pathway to a sector wide agreement - including potentially a Fair Pay Agreement in the future. If you're a teacher who's not currently covered by a collective agreement but would like to be, please let us know and we'll see what we can do for you - get in touch at nzei@nzei.org.nz or 0800 693 443.

How it will be delivered

We will deliver the petition to various government MPs during the ECE Week of Action. If you'd like to be involved in this, please get in touch!


Reasons for signing

  • I'm signing because I have 40plus years experience and a bachelor of teaching and learning in ece and get $3 an hour more than the minimum wage
  • I am signing because as a Fully Registered Teacher, with a Bachelor in Early Childhood Education, I could be earning more picking kiwifruit or packing kiwifruit in a packhouse. Ngā mihi.
  • I'm signing because I believe that other than a parent, ECE teachers play an important role in the first years of life. They should be recognized for their hard work that they do.

Updates

2021-04-17 17:16:19 +1200

1,000 signatures reached

2021-04-17 11:17:00 +1200

500 signatures reached

2021-04-16 14:40:19 +1200

100 signatures reached

2021-04-16 08:20:33 +1200

50 signatures reached

2021-04-15 20:36:19 +1200

25 signatures reached

2021-04-15 12:30:38 +1200

10 signatures reached