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Changes To Seasonal Employment Visas Announced

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Jonathan Coleman
Jonathan Coleman

Wellington, June 3 NZPA - New rules have been brought in for those who want to bring in workers under the seasonal employers scheme.

The Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) policy was introduced to meet labour shortfalls in the fruit picking sectors.

Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman said there would be three changes to the RSE. They were:

* A new type of work permit, the Supplementary Seasonal Employment (SSE) Permit.

* deductions from RSE workers' wages will have to be the same as those for New Zealanders.

* a requirement for employers to arrange health insurance for their workers and for RSE workers to pay for health insurance.

Dr Coleman said the new SSE work permit would be labour market tested to ensure that New Zealanders were first in line for jobs.

To qualify for a SSE work permit, the workers would need to be already in New Zealand lawfully. Workers would be able to move from one approved SSE employer to another over six months.

The onus would be on the employer to ensure no suitable New Zealanders were available to do the work, he said.

The health insurance requirement would ensure RSE workers had access to health care while costs to the taxpayer were minimised.

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