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Employment Law - justice at work?

Employment Law - justice at work?
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From the Chair 

Tēnā koutou katoa

This is the Employment Law conference that almost did not happen given the events of 2020. At the height of the pandemic in New Zealand, when the country shut down, the employment institutions stayed open and did their best to continue to serve those in need. This was particularly critical in a context where employment law rights and obligations became murky and changes were effected rapidly and often without following the usually expected processes.

The continued availability throughout this period of mediation services, and the Authority and Court, provided some semblance of order to an otherwise extraordinary time. However amongst the thousands of people who lost jobs and/or income there were a huge number who lacked the capacity and resources to seek advice and representation. There is a significant risk that these people become invisible in our system of law, whilst those who are better resourced have the opportunity to enforce their legal rights.

This raises a broader issue that we seek to tackle head on at this conference – is there Justice at Work? In particular, does our employment law framework provide fair access to justice for all employers and employees, and does it genuinely reflect our multi-cultural society? We intend to explore the barriers to participation and alternative approaches to dispute and grievance resolution in seeking to address these questions.

One conference will not change a framework that has developed over decades, but the committee that put together the programme for this conference had serious misgivings about these important issues, and thought they needed to be confronted. Only by challenging assumptions and the status quo can we start to move towards a different, and possibly more equitable, approach. We all have a role to play in this; he waka eke noa.

It will require all of us to get on the waka to effect the change that we seek.

Chair: Susan Hornsby-Geluk, Dundas Street Employment Lawyers, Wellington

Programme outline

Download the conference brochure for a full outline of each session.
Day 1
  • Keynote - In Search of Simplicity in Employment Law and Practice
  • Does the Manner in Which We Practise Employment Law Reflect and Honour a Multi-Cultural Society?
  • COVID-19 - employment obligations in a time of crisis
  • Remedies and Costs
  • Breakout Session 1*
    - A - Advanced - Pay Equity - the past informs the future
    - B - Experienced - Mediation
    - C - Less Experienced - Restructuring Right
  • Ethical Behaviour in a Competitive Market: Who plays by the rules?
  • Breakout Session 2*
    A - Advanced - Employment Institutions: Meaningful Access - fewer barriers
    B - Experienced - Holidays and Leave - recent developments and tricky questions
    C - Less Experienced - Navigating Investigations and Disciplinary Processes
  • Mental Health - how can we get better at recognising and responding to Mental Health Issues?
  • Eliminating Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: Time for a fresh approach
  • Networking drinks and canapes
Day 2
  • Restorative Processes - an alternative, an afterthought or the first port of call?
  • Privacy and Access to Information
  • Who is an Employee? Should the law provide minimum standards for other categories of worker?
  • Collective Bargaining - when is an inflatable "rat" offensive?
  • Breakout Session 3*
    - A - Employment Rights are Human Rights: Accessing Justice in the Human Rights Review Tribunal
    - B - Experienced - Records of Settlement - S 149
    - C - Less Experienced - Trial Periods and Casual/Fixed Term Employment
  • Your Questions
  • What Matters in the Court - strategies for managing procedure and evidence

* Note: The most popular breakout session for each time slot will be live streamed.

Learning objectives

By attending this conference you will:

  • Be up to date with the most recent employment developments.
  • Feel confident in advising your clients.

Live Web Stream

This conference is available via live web stream, direct to your computer. Click here to find out more about web streaming.
Please note: Live Web Stream registrations close 3pm 21 October.


Please indicate your selection upon registration:
  • Hard Copy - Your book will be given to you when you register on the day* - no extra charge 
  • PDF - You will be emailed a PDF copy of the book 3 working days before the event - no extra charge 
  • Both Hard Copy & PDF - You will be emailed a PDF copy of the book 3 working days before the event, and you can collect the hard copy book when you register on the day*  - additional $30 charge

*Live web stream attendees - if you select hard copy or both - your book will be couriered to you.


Day 1 - 22 October
  • 8.15am - Registration
  • 9.00am - Sessions Begin
  • 5.35pm - Sessions End
  • 5.35pm - 7.00pm Networking drinks and canapes
Day 2 - 23 October
  • 9.00am - Sessions Begin
  • 4.15pm - Session End

Fee (incl GST)


Earlybird - by 6 October 2020
  • $1,220 - NZLS members and Associate members
  • ​$1,280 - Non-members

Registration after 6 October 2020

  • $1,270 - NZLS members and Associate members
  • $1,330 - Non-members

Live Web Stream

Earlybird - by 6 October 2020
  • $1,160

Registration after 6 October 2020

  • $1,210

Do you want to register more than one person for this course? Click here
Download PDF brochure & registration form here.

Wellington 22-23 October
Live Web Stream 22-23 October
I can't attend, but please let me know when the book is available to purchase.

Cancellation and refund policy

Please note: Minimum and maximum numbers apply. Registrations will be accepted on a first-come/first-served basis. Registrations close 10 working days before the presentation date (the closing date). NZLS CLE Ltd reserves the right to cancel any session that does not reach the budgeted minimum number of registrations. This decision will be made on the closing date and a full refund will be made to each registrant of the cancelled session. If you cancel your registration before the closing date, a refund will be made, less a $200 administration fee. After the closing date, there will be no refund. You may transfer your registration to another person until five working days before the presentation. Please advise NZLS CLE Ltd in writing of the change.

Registrant Details

Use this window to add all the registrants you wish to register on behalf of. If you want to attend the course also, ensure you add yourself as one of the registrants. Make sure you press ‘save’ after adding each new registrant.

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Employment Law - justice at work? - Wellington

22 - 23 October - Te Papa

After 06-Oct-2020 NZ $1,330.00
Before 06-Oct-2020 NZ $1,280.00
SaveNZ $50.00
Early Bird
Conference Book
Breakout Session 1
Breakout Session 2
Breakout Session 3

Multiple Registration

Employment Law - justice at work? - Live Web Stream

22 - 23 October - At your desk or device

After 06-Oct-2020 NZ $1,210.00
Before 06-Oct-2020 NZ $1,160.00
SaveNZ $50.00
Early Bird
Conference Book

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freephone (within NZ)
0800 333 111

[email protected]

04 472 7837

04 463 2986
Level 4, 17-21 Whitmore Street
Wellington 6011

DX SP 20202
PO Box 5041
Wellington 6140
New Zealand