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NDU praises Summit Wool for 'responsible attitude to the recession'
19
Aug '09
“Workers at Summit Wool Spinners in Oamaru have learnt that their hours are being increased as a result of an increase in orders by the company,” says Robert Reid, National Secretary of the National Distribution Union (NDU).

“Summit has been hit hard by the global recession with a collapse in orders of its yarn. However instead of responding with mass redundancies it has made some voluntary redundancies, funded an eight day closure of the mill with workers on pay and funded the shortfall from the government contributions towards a 9 day fortnight for existing staff,” Robert Reid says.

Ken Young, Otago Southland Organiser for the NDU, who is in Oamaru today meeting union members from Summit, says he believes Summit workers will be “delighted” with the decision.

“Workers will immediately return to a 4 x 10 hour shift system which will still be subsidised under the terms of the Government's 9 day fortnight scheme.

“Although still early days we hope that orders and production will increase so that workers will soon be able to return to their old 4 x 12 hour shift system and laid off workers will be able to be re-employed,” Ken Young says.

Robert Reid and Ken Young praised Summit for their responsible attitude to the recession and said it was a pity that other companies did not adopt a similar attitude rather than transferring the burden of the recession onto their workers. They say it also shows how the 9 day fortnight can be used for the benefit of a company and its workers.

Summit is owned by the Japanese Sumitomo Corporation.

National Distribution Union (NDU)

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