New Zealand ECT’s vote unanimously to accept new pay parity deal
In a landmark moment for New Zealand’s Early Childhood Teachers (ECT), members of the New Zealand Educational Institute or NZEI Te Riu Roa have voted in favour of a proposed settlement to a new collective agreement replacing the old agreement which expired on 31 May 2019 according to the New Zealand Herald.
The Herald reports that the new agreement will see salaries for those ECT’s that are members of NZEI Te Riu Roa move to a level equivalent to primary school teachers by 12 July 2021 and also see them receive a one off gross payment of $1,500 pro-rata based on their employment status paid in November 2019.
The proposed settlement and subsequent vote comes after an extended period of action by the union which culminated in a joint strike on 29 May 2019 and also after a settlement for primary school teachers to receive pay parity with their secondary colleagues was agreed and voted for in late June.
The new collective agreement will see entry level trained teachers’ pay go from $48,410 to $51,358 while the most senior staff will receive up to $107,770 as well as including an explicit commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
Commenting on the development Virginai Oakly, the NZEI Te Riu Roa lead negotiator noted that it was a significant and positive development but highlighted “We do still need to address pay rates and work conditions across the wider early childhood sector and we’ll continue working toward that as well as looking at opportunities to address workload and wellbeing in other forums.”