Unions Wellington is the local council of Trade Unions. It is the representative body for working people in the Wellington Region- teachers, bus drivers, baristas- we are hear for working people.
Representing working people at the workplace is really important. But we also seek to represent working people politically, and to encourage working people and their communities to participate in our democracy.
Local council elections are important, but for many people it can be difficult to cut through the noise and establish which candidates are community heroes, and who are only interested in their own political careers. This survey is our attempt to make that easier.
We sent our survey to candidates for Wellington City Council, Porirua City Council, Hutt City Council and the Greater Wellington Regional Council. We asked questions about important workers rights issues like the living wage, but also other issues that effect union members strongly, such as climate change, housing and service provision. For the questions asked of candidates see below. For a candidates responses, check the page for each ward/mayoral race.
We are wanting to see candidates that prioritize workers rights at council, that take a proactive response to climate change, that will seek to protect public assets from privatization and that endeavor to ensure everyone in our region has a safe, dry, affordable home. We believe candidates that make these commitments are worth voting for, and we hope you do too.
The ranking process-
Candidates ranking/recommendation was arrived at in a two step process. Firstly an assessment of the candidate. This was predominately based on responses given by the candidate to the survey. In the survey we were looking for a commitment to the living wage, for openness to enabling worker participation, for a commitment to the retention and expansion of council services, and for proactive responses to housing and the environment. As well as the survey, some other information may have been consulted, such as voting records of sitting councilors, or a demonstrable commitment to the union movement and progressive politics.
The second step was to view this assessment alongside other candidates in each ward. The purpose of this is to be a working document, and the nature of STV is that there is a ranking process. Therefore in some wards, relatively minor divergences in answer could be the difference in endorsement/non endorsement and recommendation placings.
At each step we received feedback from a range of unionists and community leaders.
Please appreciate it as our honest appraisal of the options available in your ward, just as we appreciated your answers and participation in the survey.
Also please note- Party affiliations are not a factor in these rankings. While some Unions have affiliations and relationships with the Labour Party and/or the Green Party, our survey responses have focused on a candidates individual commitments/past records.
This guide created by Unions Wellington, Local Affiliate Council of the Council of Trade Unions. Voting recommendations and rankings compiled through consultation with local unions and community groups. Unions Wellington recommendation does not equate to endorsement or official support from individual affiliate unions. Authorized by Ben Peterson, Unions Wellington level 5, 160 Willis St.
The survey questions:
Are you a union member/staff member?
Have you previously been a union member? If so, when and where?
(for business owners only) Are there union agreements at your business/s? Question 1)
Do you support a living wage for all staff directly employed by the council?
Do you support a living wage for all contractors employed by the council?
Do you support a living wage for all staff employed by the council controlled organisations?
Do you support equal pay claims for relevant council staff (such as library assistants) and would you support working with Unions to advance these claims?
Would you support adapting council procurement policies to positively view contractors with union agreements?
Would you support adapting council employment policies to ensure all directly employed, contractors and staff of CCO’s have access to with union membership?
Do you support declaring a climate emergency? What role do you think Council can play in preventing climate change and mitigating its effects?
Under what circumstances would you support the sale of any council owned assets or organisations (or part thereof)?
Do you support the privatization of council services? Would you support bringing currently privatized services back under direct council control?
What role do you think council plays in making sure that decent and affordable housing is available for all residents? Question 11) (GWRC Candidates only)
Do you support the establishment of a working group with relevant transport unions to regularly consult on aspects of the delivery of regional public transport services?
Would you use your position on regional council to seek the repeal of the Public Transport Operating Model (PTOM)?Question 13)
Can you demonstrate a commitment to working people and progressive politics? (please elaborate upto 200 words)Question 14)
Is there any further information that we should take into account?