NZ Screen Industry Workers Bill

10 August, 2022

The Australian Writers’ Guild and AWGACS wish the best of luck to New Zealand AWGACS Members and the New Zealand Writers Guild, who will witness the progression of the Screen Industry Workers Bill in its Second Reading in New Zealand Parliament today, Thursday, 11 August 2022.

If the Bill is passed, it will mark a momentous shift toward restoring the rights of screen workers to collectively bargain and to establish enforceable contracts with mandatory terms.

What is the Bill?  

The Screen Industry Workers Bill (SIWB or The Bill) is an attempt to remedy the current Employment Relations Amendment Act 2010, aka The Hobbit Law. The 2010 amendment created an environment where screen production workers do not have the same abilities to have enforceable minimums, test their employment status, collectively bargain, or adequately remedy contracting disputes, as workers in other industries do.   

The SIWB is designed to restore the rights of screen workers to collectively bargain and to establish enforceable contracts with mandatory terms.  

What types of productions does the bill cover? 

The Bill covers the following types of screen productions: 

  • computer-generated games 
  • films 
  • programmes (one-offs, miniseries and TV series etc.) 

What is collective bargaining? 

Collective bargaining is the process used to negotiate collective contracts. Collective contracts are contracts between occupational groups and engagers. In the screen industry, engagers will be the Producers and Production Companies you normally work with, and they will be represented by SPADA. 

The Bill enables representative organisations to collectively bargain contracts on behalf of the occupational groups. For example, NZWG would collectively bargain/negotiate on behalf of the writers, and SPADA would be negotiating on behalf of the Producers as the engager. 

To read and view the progress of the Bill, click here

The SIWB will affect every New Zealand screenwriter. To find out more about this and have your voice heard, please click here

Connect with AWGACS on LinkedIn or via our website.  

You can also stay up to date with what’s happening in your industry by getting in touch with your guilds – to visit the Australian Writers’ Guild click here and the New Zealand Writers Guild here.