6/4/2017 - New Zealand should extend access to income support and introduce a longer minimum notice period for all workers to help disadvantaged laid-off workers find a new job and maintain their job quality and living standards, according to a new OECD report.
Back to Work: New Zealand says that 1.1% of people of working age in the country have been made redundant in the last 5 years and still not found a new job. This share is lower than in the 1990s but higher than ten years ago. Most redundant workers find employment again although one in six is unable to find work.
Many of those who are re-employed tend to earn less, work shorter hours and have fewer benefits than in their prior jobs. The long-term impact on wages is also stronger than in other OECD countries: even three years after redundancy, personal income is about 20% lower for workers in a new job compared to their peers who stayed in work.
Low-skilled workers are particularly at risk, finds the report. People with lower secondary education are twice as likely to be made redundant as people with a bachelor degree or more, and the shares among those with no qualification are three times higher.
With around 84% of workers finding a new job within two years of being made redundant, New Zealand performs better than many other OECD countries, as a result of its flexible labour market which allows firms to adjust their workforce in line with production demand.
To help vulnerable workers find good jobs quickly, the OECD recommends New Zealand:
The full report is available at http://www.oecd.org/publications/back-to-work-new-zealand-9789264264434-en.htm.
For further information, journalists should contact Christopher Prinz (tel. + 33 1 45 24 94 83), leader of the OECD review on displaced workers, or Mark Keese (tel. +33 1 45 24 87 94), head of OECD’s Employment Policy Division.