Wood millworkers in Auckland’s capital city of Wellington have been left without a stable job for months as the city’s economic woes have worsened.
Wood millworkers have been told they will be unable to work for another four months, meaning they will not be able to get a new job.
New Zealand’s unemployment rate has hit 15.9 per cent, with the unemployment rate in Wellington at 21.9 percent.
The city’s unemployment has also risen to 10.5 per cent.
The new jobs will be found in the construction industry.
The New Zealand Construction Association has been tasked with hiring wood millworkers for a period of five years.
But there has been no guarantee of a stable employment, and the union has not said whether they will take on any new staff, The Daily Telegraph reported.
“There are a lot of problems with the job market,” a union official told the newspaper.
Workers in the wood mill industry are increasingly finding themselves on the margins of society, and they feel the cuts have been hard enough, but not enough.
A recent survey found only a quarter of the workers said they would like to stay in the industry.
Meanwhile, in the capital city, the New Zealand Wood Industry Association has told members to find another job.
“We’ve had a lot more calls this year from people who are really looking for a job and not knowing where to look,” the association’s CEO, Nick Dore, told the Herald.
Despite the lack of jobs, New Zealand has also seen a surge in foreign workers.
In the past year, foreign workers have become a major source of jobs for the country’s timber industry, with some of the country’s biggest firms, such as Glencore, the world’s largest timber company, using foreign workers to cut down trees for their projects.
For many, this has meant that New Zealanders have become more dependent on them than they have been before.
Some of these workers have complained about their work conditions, but Dore insists they have worked hard and have shown their commitment to the industry to help maintain its competitiveness.