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Ngā Pitopito Kōrero
Recent measures taken to eliminate covid-19 could be seen as being the first example of express recognition by the New Zealand government of the right to health as a fundamental human right. It may also be the first time that the New Zealand government has fully implemented the United Nations’ Guiding Principles (UNGPs) on Business and Human Rights.
To mitigate against the adverse financial impacts caused by the Level 4 arrangements, the government has introduced a number of measures. From an employment law context, the most significant is the wage subsidy scheme.
As a result of the government’s response to Covid-19, especially since New Zealand moved to Alert-Level 4, many businesses have been forced to shut down or, at least, to work remotely. This is likely to have a significantly detrimental effect on business revenue.
New Zealand is in lockdown for a minimum of four weeks. Businesses are forced to close. Thousands of employees are at risk of their positions being made redundant. In this environment, it is critical to restate the key tenets of employment law in New Zealand.