The Employment Relations Amendment Act passed its third reading last night. The Government says it will restore "a better workplace relations framework for New Zealand workers".

"The Act restores many of the conditions that existed during the previous Labour-led Government, at time when the economy enjoyed record-low unemployment and unprecedented economic growth," said Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway.

He says the Act:

  • reinstates prescribed meal and rest breaks
  • strengthens collective bargaining and union rights
  • restores protections for "vulnerable workers", regardless of the size of their employer
  • limits 90-day trials to business with fewer than 20 employees.

The majority of changes will come into force on May 6 next year.

Clubs New Zealand will release more details on the changes prior to them taking effect in 2019.