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Monday, March 23

Holiday trade the employee’s choice

Plans to give employees the choice to cash in the fourth week of their annual holidays will be included in the review of the Holiday's Act this year, says Minister of Labour Kate Wilkinson.

"It has been reported the Government intends on letting employers offer their staff a cash payment to replace their fourth week of annual leave, but in reality they will not be allowed to make such an offer.

"Our policy clearly gives employees the choice - only they can approach their boss and ask to make the trade. "The employer can then say yes or no, as they will have to pay the cost of that fourth week."

Surveys show most workers only take three weeks' leave each year, so if they want to trade in that fourth week and their employer agrees then it's a win-win."

The proposed legislation is in its very early stages as part of a review of the Holiday's Act, which will also include work on simplifying the issue of relevant daily pay. The terms of reference for the review are being drawn up and a working group including Business New Zealand and the Council of Trade Unions will be established.

It is envisaged that the review will be completed and legislation introduced to parliament this year.

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