Government reviewing migrant worker exploitation

Maid tidying up bed and cleaning luxury hotel room

The New Zealand Government is taking actions against migrant worker exploitation, following accusations against AHS Hospitality for underpaying and overworking international hospitality students in New Zealand.

“The Government is determined to build a fair and inclusive modern economy fit for the 21st century, and nowhere in that vision is a place for the exploitation of migrant workers,” said Iain Lees-Galloway, New Zealand Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister.

“While migrants bring the skills, we need to grow our economy, many migrant workers, especially those on temporary and student visa, are particularly vulnerable to exploitation.

Migrant worker exploitation takes many shapes and forms, like workers being underpaid, working excessively long hours or working in unsafe conditions. To combat these issues, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has tasked with researching these issues.

“Auckland UniServices will work with MBIE on this important work. Conducting research through a third party provides an independent and confidential space to hear from migrant and international student groups, unions and businesses.

“This is a thorough review, and will take time. I expect to make decisions in 2019. In the meantime, MBIE will continue to take action against those who exploit migrants.”