Entry-level job concern

Laura Black
Laura Black
Dunedin is becoming a city of ''middle-aged, middle-class'' workers with a dearth of entry-level roles, Methodist Mission chief executive Laura Black says.

Ms Black was commenting on the latest round of Dunedin redundancies, this time because of the downgrade of the Dunedin Mail Centre.

New Zealand Post has shifted standard mail processing to Christchurch, resulting in 39 redundancies and five redeployments.

One of the redeployments was a delivery job in Dunedin, and the rest were in Christchurch, Wellington and Palmerston North.

Most workers finished at the end of last week.

Seven left in May, and three would stay until the middle of next month.

''We're heavily weighted to jobs for well-qualified, middle-aged, middle-class people because we're a provincial capital,'' Ms Black said.

''There are fewer and fewer entry-level jobs.''

Increasingly, Dunedin was a city whose jobs required tertiary-level qualifications, and centres needed a range of roles at all skill levels.

She believed the plight of thousands of young unemployed people was not being addressed.

She applauded the ''fantastic'' leadership of Clutha Mayor Bryan Cadogan, and said a similar youth jobs initiative should be launched in Dunedin.

Also, the Government needed to help, especially by supporting manufacturing.

''If central Government is not willing to put its enormous spending power behind the regions, then with the best will in the world, it's a pretty uphill struggle.''

While her focus was not one particular industry, Ms Black pointed out that if courier mail had not been deregulated, New Zealand Post would be ''coining it'' because of the growth in online shopping.

Engineering Printing and Manufacturing Union national industry organiser (postal and logistics) Joe Gallagher, of Auckland, said smaller centres such as Dunedin were not being helped by the Government.

''Dunedin's getting a hiding.

''This is a great loss for Dunedin - losing their mail centre.''

The union accepted the need for change because of falling mail volumes, but did not agree with the way the problem was being handled, including the rapid speed of the changes.

''It's getting harder and harder to get a decent job in these communities,'' Mr Gallagher said.

Workers offered transfers faced a difficult choice, because of higher housing costs in main centres such as Christchurch, he said.

He said the Government wanted state-owned enterprises such as New Zealand Post to return increasing dividends, which needed to be questioned.


I will keep my job

Jonkey: You are astray on several points. I am 79 and collect Universal Superannuation as I am entitled to. I also work part-time as a Tertiary Education Lecturer and am very pleased to do so because nobody else in NZ is qualified to do so in my field. That working income helps to pay the horrendous power bills we are now inflicted with. Continuing to work keeps one's brain young and enquiring. No way am I going to give up either Super or my work for a younger person. Forget it!

Work for the young

 If you want to 'blame' anyone for not providing work for the young look no further than government policy and vote to change it.




No idea

How can it be more cost efficient for our mail to be transported to Chch and back everyday? No wonder NZ post can't compete. They never imagined they were hotmail and continued doing the same thing in a vain attempt to stay current while using old practice. The government has done its best to lock out youngsters from jobs for so long it's idiocy, and raising the retirement age? It should be lowered! Retirement should mean just that. No getting a job and recieving the super, sorry. Time for others to get their chance. If you don't want people locked into a lifestyle on the benefit give them a chance to break free from it now.

Time for change

Time to change the government to one that cares about the the smaller centres and actively encourages regional development.

Claiming Super while still at work

Part of the problem is people claiming super while still working. If you are going to claim super, ie the retirement pension then you should have to retire first. Do the decent thing and move aside when it is your time and free up an opportunity for someone else.

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