18 Apr 2012

Port Otago workers protest receptionist redundancy

9:47 pm on 18 April 2012

About 60 Port Otago workers have staged a protest against the sacking of a company receptionist.

The Rail Maritime and Transport Union says it is angry Port Otago is refusing to go to mediation to discuss the plan to make the secretary redundant.

The receptionist is a union member and a long-serving employee.

The company also shed 12 cargo handling jobs at Port Chalmers last October.

Union branch president Ruth Blakeley says the protest is a principled stand to save another job.

Ms Blakeley says the union's members are very upset because they are sick of restructuring and want a fair process for the employee.

She says running the port's main reception without a secretary could create safety risks for other staff.