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There is a lot happening in the employment arena at the moment! We will cover off a few of the highlights:

Effective 31 March 2021
Bereavement Leave
Bereavement Leave has been extended to allow eligible employees to take three days’ paid bereavement leave in the following circumstances:

  • The employee’s immediate family member dies (parents, child, partner/spouse, grandparents, grandchildren, brother, sister, parents-in-law)
  • The employee has a miscarriage or stillbirth
  • Another person has a miscarriage or stillbirth and the employee is the person’s partner; or the person’s former partner; or had agreed to be the primary carer of the child; or is the partner of a person who had agreed to be the primary carer.

Other criteria applicable to bereavement leave remain the same.

Effective 1 July 2021
Vulnerable Workers to include Security Guards
Part 6A of the Employment Relations Act 2000 provides protection for certain categories of employees (known as vulnerable employees). From 1 July this protection has been extended to certain types of security services. This provision in the Act protects vulnerable employees when the work they perform is transferred to another business (e.g. if the business is sold). The new employer is obliged to take over the vulnerable employees (if the employee chooses to transfer) and their employment is uninterrupted despite now working for a different Company.

The 1 July extension means the following employees will also be protected:

  • Employees guarding real or personal property belonging to another person
  • Employees monitoring cameras or similar devices on the premises
  • Employees providing crowd control services
  • Employees providing escort and courtroom custodial duties
  • Employees providing mobile security patrols
  • Employees having to collect cash from premises

Effective 24 July 2021
Sick Leave
The Government has kept its election promise and has passed legislation that increases the minimum sick leave entitlement from five days to 10 days. There is no increase in the maximum sick leave balance of 20 days.

From Saturday 24 July, all employees will receive a minimum of 10 days at their next sick leave entitlement date (including those whose entitlement date is 24 July).
For those employees whose entitlement day fell or falls before 24 July, their entitlement is still five days and they must work another year to get the 10 days.

Remember, sick leave is not pro-rated. If the employee works part-time, they are still entitled to 10 days’ sick leave, but payable only on days the employee would normally have worked.

Effective 24 June 2022
Matariki Public Holiday
The Government has introduced another Public Holiday to celebrate Maori New Year.  This will fall on Fridays on differing dates, starting from next year, Friday 24 June. Future dates can be found on

Employment Agreements
With so much change happening, it might be a good idea to update your employment agreements. In the past, we have suggested a review of your agreements every two or three years.

Remember, there are different types of agreements: casual, permanent part-time or full-time, and fixed term.

We have always carried out investigations on behalf of employers on a range of matters, including dishonesty, employment disputes, etc., and of late we have been carrying out a number of bullying investigations. Some of these did not meet the recognised threshold as detailed in WorkSafe’s guidelines on what constitutes bullying.

Investigation Licence
It has become necessary for us to have a licence in order to carry out this type of work. We now hold a Company licence from the Private Security Personnel Licensing Authority. This, along with individual licences, allows us to continue to carry out employment investigations on behalf of our clients.