The New Zealand Government is providing a new online multilingual learning programme, which will protect migrant workers and school students from exploitation.
According to a recent press release, the Introduction to Your Employment Rights e-module is the first multilingual programme of its kind that checks and clarifies employment rights knowledge in less than 30 minutes.
The Introduction to Your Employment Rights e-module
The tool is currently available in six languages and would serve as another step in the proactive prevention of worker exploitation.
Initially, it is available in English, Samoan, Chinese, Hindi, Korean, and Tagalog (Filipino). It has a voice-over for the same languages, to guarantee that people with low literacy can understand their rights.
The module will be translated into more languages in the future and should be followed soon by an employer obligations learning module, which is being developed.
Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway explained that migrant workers and students entering the workforce remain two of the most vulnerable workforce groups in New Zealand.
This is because they often have little understanding of their employment rights.
This educational module sets the scene to improve knowledge of their rights and empower them to know what to do from the start of their employment.
The module will enable workers to understand their employment agreements, know their employment rights, and stand up for them or seek support, if needed.
Better informing these employee groups will ensure they have better work experiences and help protect them from exploitative practices.
The module will be promoted to tertiary and industry training providers, unions, schools, migrant groups and also through the immigration system.
The completed module provides a learning record for users, which they can choose to share with their employers or training organisation.
Role of Employers
Furthermore, organisations can request their own accounts to track use and completion rates for employees.
Businesses are encouraged to advise their migrant staffs that include those still in their home countries; young staff, or those new to the workplace to use the learning module and complete it.
This is a matter of good practice on the part of employers that can help ensure employees are aware of their minimum employment rights.
Additionally, the learning records can also be used by businesses to show their customers that they take ethical employment seriously.
Secondary and tertiary education providers as well as industry training organisations are encouraged to educate their students and empower future employees.
The module also shows employees how to get more information and support, including through a suite of more in-depth employer and employee e-learning modules accessible on the Employment Services website.
The Government is taking serious action on migrant exploitation and is proposing some significant change to help prevent it, protect exploited migrants and enforce appropriate working conditions and immigration obligations.
The proposal can be found here. The closing date for feedback is on 27 November 2019.