Myths on the Probationary Period Bill

The hysteria has already set in. No Right Turn claims the bill “would prevent workers from suing for arrears if they are not paid.”

But go the Bill and it says:

However this does not affect the employee’s rights … or action for breach of contract in relation to probationary employment which could extend, for example, to recovery of wages.

A probational employee still has rights under general contract law, just not through the Employment Relations Authority for 90 days.

Graeme in comments on the earlier thread said it meant employers could sexually harass new employees. Again quoting the Bill’s explanatory note:

However, this does not affect the employee’s rights under the Human Rights Act 1993 in the event that he or she suffers discrimination on the various grounds covered by that Act

And NRT has spoken about the WINZ policy of 13 weeks stand-down if sacked and how this will force people into starvation or homelessness. Or if we are rational WINZ will simply amend their policy so that it doesn’t apply to terminations during a trial period.

Something critics have also failed to mention is that one can agree with an employer not to have a probationary period. It is not compulsory – it can be opted out of by mutual consent.

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