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Brash Shouldn't Encourage Negative Stereotypes About Unions

2 March 2004

"We hope that National Party leader Don Brash will not encourage negative stereotypes about unions," said Mr Ian Powell, Executive Director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists, today. Mr Powell was responding to reports that Don Brash is planning to use unionism as a basis for attacking the Employment Relations Law Reform Bill currently before Parliament.

"Unions cover a broad range of employees in New Zealand from 'blue-collar' workers to professionals, including nurses and senior doctors. They can play an enormously constructive contribution to New Zealand's economic and social direction because they provide a voice for the collective experience and practical common sense of employees in the workplace."

"I challenge anyone to give an example of an organisation that has done more than the unions representing nurses and doctors to protect and maintain a viable and accessible quality public health service in New Zealand, including protecting the public against the worst effects of the failed market experiment in the health system of the 1990s."

"Politicians who resort to anti-union stereotypes are in effect attacking doctors and nurses," concluded Mr Powell.

Association of Salaried Medical Specialists Media Release

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