About 40 meatworkers have rallied outside the Motueka homes of Affco owners Peter and Andrew Talley on Monday, as facilitation between the Meat Workers Union and the meat processing company gets underway.
The two parties have been at loggerheads for months over a collective employment agreement, which has led to about 1000 workers being locked out of Affco's eight North Island plants since the end of February.
A request from the union for facilitated bargaining to try and resolve the dispute was accepted by the Employment Relations Authority last week.
During the talks in Auckland, a facilitator, who can make public, non-binding recommendations, will actively assist both parties to come to an agreement.
Meanwhile, union spokesman Simon Oosterman told NZ Newswire attempts by meatworkers and their families to speak with Peter and Andrew Talley at their homes were ignored.
A bundle of letters, many expressing the negative impact of the lockout on families, was left at one of the homes, while placards with slogans supporting the workers were left on the gate of the other.The meatworkers then travelled to Nelson for a protest on Monday afternoon, where they were supported by about 200 workers from a local fishing company.
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