The Maritime Union has made a statement to confirm its position on the vaccination of port workers.
Maritime Union of New Zealand National Secretary Craig Harrison says misinformation is threatening health and safety in ports.
Mr Harrison says the Maritime Union recommended and supported MUNZ members being vaccinated for the COVID-19 virus.
He says the Union recognises and respects the freedom of choice for its members and encourages them to make an informed decision.
Under the COVID-19 Public Health Response (Vaccinations) Amendments Order 2021, vaccination for port workers on or around ships will now become mandatory.
Privately employed border workers must have had their first dose by 30 September 2021.
Mr Harrison says the Union will work with employers and members to try and resolve any situations where jobs are in jeopardy.
He says that New Zealand cannot afford to lose staff in ports which were already under massive pressure.
However, the situation was quite clear, as was the Union’s position.
“The public health order has been made, and as good health and safety practice, both employers and workers must abide by it.”
Mr Harrison says claims that port workers had a uniquely low vaccination rate were inaccurate, and recent figures show vaccination rates in ports at around 78% in the industry.
There were high rates of vaccination in many ports, and other factors were driving the issue in other regions.
For more information, contact Maritime Union of New Zealand National Secretary Craig Harrison on 0274225238