The Ports of Auckland dispute has gone national.
A picket has been placed on Centreport late on Friday evening in Wellington as a ship worked by managers and non-union employees at Ports of Auckland this week arrived into port.
A demonstration was also held at the gates of Port of Tauranga from around 2am this morning, to mark the arrival of Irenes Remedy, another vessel that had called into Ports of Auckland.
The Maersk Aberdeen is alongside the wharf but not working, and the Irenes Remedy is waiting outside the harbour, with poor weather conditions in both ports.
Maritime Union of New Zealand General Secretary Joe Fleetwood, speaking from a picket line on the Wellington port gates, says the action is necessary to defend secure jobs and livelihoods from attacks by a ruthless employer.
He says Maritime Union members were joined by other unions at both ports in wet, cold and windy conditions all through the night.
"Workers around the rest of New Zealand are not going to stand by while fellow workers are under attack and their livelihoods put in jeopardy by a rogue management pursuing an anti-worker agenda."
Mr Fleetwood says a statement by Ports of Auckland CEO Tony Gibson that he was "encouraged by the support of other Port CEOs around New Zealand who are very clear that ships worked in Auckland will also be worked around the Coast" was disturbing and obviously incorrect.
"Mr Gibson is now causing major problems in other ports around New Zealand, causing their business to be disrupted and relationship with their workers to be damaged."
"The owners of other ports should be extremely concerned their ports are now being affected by the contracting out and casualization attack at Ports of Auckland, and must demand their ports are not allowed to be used to promote Mr Gibson's agenda."
He says Ports of Auckland management need to lift the threat of contracting out labour at Ports of Auckland and get back into serious negotiations towards a collective agreement.