Govt Better Work Action Plan for tourism workforce not action enough

The Government’s draft Better Work Action Plan for the tourism workforce released earlier this month is a shining example of this Government’s inability to prioritise the real issues which face many businesses in my Southland electorate says local MP for Southland, Joseph Mooney.

“Everywhere I go, I hear of severe staffing shortages resulting in businesses having to reduce hours, close for days at a time, and some may close for good because they can't get staff.

"New Zealand is facing its biggest worker shortage in fifty years and to make matters worse, the Government's immigration settings continue to make it harder for businesses to get staff from overseas.

“The Action Plan is high-level and almost entirely theoretical.  Some ideas proposed in the plan will have almost no impact on the current worker shortage in Southland.

"Instead, the Government needs to make it easier to hire workers from overseas as the immigration hurdles that this Government continues to put on New Zealand businesses amid a global war for talent, are extraordinary and incredibly short-sighted.

"While National believes this plan should be halted until the current labour shortage is solved and tourists are coming back to the country at pre-COVID levels, I will encourage businesses to have their say on the draft Action Plan. 

“Submissions on the draft plan are open until 14 September 2022 and a range of in-person and online workshops have been scheduled. While the Queenstown workshops have already taken place, submissions can still be made online.

“Together we can persuade this Government to focus their attention by urgently addressing the worker shortage issue and give businesses in my Southland electorate a fighting chance.”

Media Contact: Connie Giquel 027 230 1499               

Note to editors:  Draft Better Work Action Plan consultation document can be found at