Press Release – Unite Union
“Two weeks? No way! We want fair redundancy pay!” will be the message of Highland Park cinema workers today at 3pm, as they take their message to the doorsteps of Event Cinema Corporate HQ at the bottom of Auckland’s Greys Avenue.
The Highland Park cinema, which is shutting permanently tomorrow evening, has already been the site of pickets and protests, but today, the sacked workers want to meet national managers face to face to justify their treatement of long standing staff. Workers who have been with the company for 8 years, 12 years, even 16 years, have all been offered only two weeks pay on termination. When their union, Unite, asked the company to reconsider their offer, Event Cinemas offered to throw in some complimentary movie tickets!
“The fight of the Highland Park workers is not only for themselves and their families, but for every worker in Aotearoa” said Unite Union organiser Joe Carolan. “It’s impossible to find work at the moment in Auckland, and harder still for people who have already given the best years of their life to companies like Event. New Zealand is one of the few Western countries without statutory redundancy, and this needs to change. Companies like Event are making huge profits and have already spent millions of dollars upgrading their cinemas to 3D and Digital – they should do the decent thing by the dozen or so people from Highland Park who’ve lost their employment through no fault of their own”.
“Unfortunately, we are going to see more and more of this this year. Unite union supports a minimum statutory redundancy entitlement of 4 by 2; four weeks pay, and 2 weeks for every additional year worked, as a recognition for long service. The workers in Highland Park are willing to take a lead on this. Event cinemas – Don’t be so Miserables – workers want fair redundancy pay”.