We have been campaigning for effective pay equity policy and legislation since 1986. At that time, New Zealand had recently ratified ILO Convention 100 on Equal Remuneration for Men and Women for Work of Equal Value and the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women. These UN Conventions, adopted in 1951 and 1979 respectively, require ratifying governments to ensure equal pay for women doing the same work as men, and also equal remuneration of women and men for different work shown to be of equal value by objective appraisal.
For many years, the Coalition for Equal Value, Equal Pay was the umbrella group for women’s organisations and unions interested in furthering policy, legislation and negotiations to ensure pay equity for New Zealand women. That broad-based work is currently the role of Pay Equity Challenge Coalition, of which we are an active member. The Coalition for Equal Value, Equal Pay is now a more specialist group with expertise and experience that spans the breadth and history of this policy issue.
Our current members include those with direct involvement in:
Test case 2013
2013, CEVEP was invited to be an 'intervening' party to a test case being
taken under the Equal Pay act by resthome worker Kristine Bartlett and
the Service & Food Workers Union. This means that lawyer Stephanie Dyhrberg was able to speak at the Employment Court hearing on our
behalf in support of the plaintiffs' claim. The Human Rights Commission,
NZ Council of Trade Unions, Pay Equity Challenge Coalition, Aged Care
Association and Business NZ were also intervenors.
CEVEP was formed in 1986, after a claim for equal pay for work of equal value for clerical workers was rejected by the Arbitration Court.
A seminar for Equal Pay for Work of Equal Value was held at the Centre for Continuing Education, Victoria University of Wellington in April 1986, and the beginnings of a national pay equity campaign evolved. A further meeting established the Coalition for Equal Value for Equal Pay (CEVEP).
CEVEP quickly recognised the need for grassroots support from the community as well as unionists, academics and policy analysists to persuade the government to look at making legislation that would be more effective to providing pay and employment equity for New Zealand women.
Producing newsletters, media releases and holding meetings with politicians, CEVEP developed strong relationships with women's organisations and unions, who in turn worked with their members to spread awareness of the pay equity cause. CEVEP was a key player in the run up to Labour's Equal Employment Act 1990 which provided mechanisms for equal value job assessments and EEO in private sector employment, but was quickly repealed by an incoming National government.
In the 2000s CEVEP was involved in policy consultations and some of its members undertook research for the 2004 Taskforce. In 2004 we also lobbied strongly against replacing the Equal Pay Act 1972 with a very poor designed Employment Relations Act amendment for a new individual complaints process covering equal pay for women and men in the same job only.
In 2013 many of CEVEP's old members, and some new ones, are part of a renewed campaign to promote equal pay and equal pay for work of equal value for New Zealand women.
In July 2015 longstanding CEVEP member Elizabeth Orr received an 'Inspiring Union Woman' award from the NZCTU...see more.
www.cevep.org.nz - 7 August 2016