Teachers' unions, Minister in day-long meeting to break deadlock

Author
Newstalk ZB ,
Publish Date
Thu, 6 Jun 2019, 4:46PM
Chris Hipkins is meeting both teaching unions today. (Photo / NZ Herald)

Teachers' unions, Minister in day-long meeting to break deadlock

Author
Newstalk ZB ,
Publish Date
Thu, 6 Jun 2019, 4:46PM
A negotiation expert thinks teachers have the upper hand in their meeting today with Chris Hipkins. 
The Education Minister has been meeting with primary and secondary teachers' unions all day in an attempt to resolve their long-running dispute.
Secondary teachers have begun five weeks of rolling and regional strikes, on the back of last week's mega-strike that saw all unionised teachers walk off the job. 
However, Hipkins has told teachers that the Government will not revise their pay offer, a call echoed by Jacinda Ardern. 
Negotiation expert Fred Adelhelm says that Minister needs to listen to the issues, but told Heather du Plessis Allan Hipkins hasn't helped himself by taking such a hard stance on the matter of money.
"When you use that terminology very publicly, that gets even the most moderate people riled up."
He believes that the teachers have an advantage over the Minister.
"Although the action has caused quite a lot of discomfort to parents and the general public,  I think there are fairly large amounts of sympathy in the population for the teachers." 
Adelhelm says that the teachers can keep pushing the Government with the threat for more strikes, but that will only go so far before the public changes their stance. 
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