Andrew Little’s migrant exploitation arrogance gets bashed (and it ain’t pretty)


So there’s Andrew Little last week on Q+A getting grilled by Jack Tame on the Worker Visa accreditation scheme that effectively trusts the 27 000 accredited to not exploit the 77 000 migrant workers.

Jack challenges the process and argues the system, is only funded to review 15% of applications yet to date had barely reviewed 3% and of the 27 000 accredited, the Government had dumped only 2.

The Minister struggled to look credible as he sat with a straight face and declared the current 3% was working fine.

24 hours later Newshub is breaking a story about 50 migrant workers living in a South Auckland slum exploited by the Worker Visa accreditation scheme .

The Minister stood by his previous statements.

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Then Newshub break that the number of migrant workers being exploited is now 100.

The Minister, while standing by his previous statements that barely 3% of the 27 000 accredited employers means the system is working, he does now agree that an investigation is necessary.

Then Newshub finally arrive at a total of 115 migrant workers exploited and scammed into using this accreditation scheme minus any jobs.

Andrew Little turns on the Ministry and demands to know why the system is falling to pieces.

Under pressure from the Bosses, Labour threw open the immigration floodgates with zero checks and balances and simply trusted bosses not to exploit the workers they were bringing in.

Thanks to 30 years of a de-unionized work force, our depressed low wage economy requires exploiting migrant labour and NZ wants to get back to business.

The simple solution of course would be universal union membership for all migrant workers.

The Minister could not ever consider that solution.


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  1. Did this fiasco come in under Little or that champion for the stock broking underclass, Michael Wood? And if it’s the latter, why?

  2. Is this the result of Little’s naivety at the officials’ advice that the checks will be fine, or his forgetting what he learnt as a union leader about how employers can screw over the vulnerable worker?

  3. To give Labour some credit they did try to use covid as an excuse to shut the border and force kiwi businesses to take on the bottom 5% of working age Kiwis. But to be charitable, some people aren’t suited to employment.
    Also let’s do some math before we start shouting exploitation. 77,000 have come in and so far only 115 have been found to have been scammed. Also let’s not be afraid to be honest. The majority of exploitation of migrant workers, where employment laws are broken and criminal proceedings occur is undertaken by Indian small business owners.
    The vast majority of established industries that use migrant workers follow the rules and migrants work alongside kiwi workers for the same pay and conditions. When this happens everyone is happy everyone gains.

  4. There is not even an employer identified as providing a job to those here on the visa. They’re here on the promise of a job from the person the migrants paid money to, who is not an accredited employer.

    The system design is organised for the systematic operation of a scam. People clipping the ticket while facilitating the widespread availability of migrant worker pool to (potential future) employers.

    It’s just a “corrupt” form of open slather.

    Was it organised to empower the migrant worker, by reducing the need to be tied to a single accredited employer. Was it designed to ensure plenty of available workers to keep employers happy?

    Was this new “market” supposed to work better than anything before it?

    And also fit in seamlessly to another market, housing. To ensure rising rents to landlords during a cost of living crisis?

    Did no one in MBIE, or Treasury, notice any problems that might result?

  5. As minister of health Andrew Little ignored the plea to fast track nurses and by the time he was moved on Australia had got in ahead of us now we are 8000 short .
    Thanks for nothing Mr Andrew Do Little.

  6. He couldn’t propose universal trade union membership for immigrants, because then people would ask why he didn’t oppose the abolition of universal trade union membership for all workers — when he was the leader of the largest trade union!

  7. Andrew Little is just not capable. He is a good man with integrity but isn’t ‘up to scratch’ a politician.

    • So your hard right mates in National and ACT will fix things will they!? Of course they are sympathetic to unions and ending exploitation. How did I get forget!!!?

    • Maybe Prunella. He certainly can’t use naivity as as an excuse. He’s been around politics too long for that. But then again what Minister would not question the possibility of wide spread exploitation. It’s a situation that screams such. I think there was too much pressure coming from certain business / employer groups after Covid, the govt needed to jump, did put some checks and balances in place but didn’t have the resources to police them. Perhaps he believes in the goodness of people to play fair. But then that’s naivity. All I can say in his defence is it’ll probally be twice as worst under a Nat/Act coalition.

    • No one in this Labour Government is capable. They have recruited a bunch of clowns and now seem surprised they don’t have anything to offer except circus antics.

  8. I don’t think Angry Little is very good with numbers? Also in relation to immigration, his failure to consider the impact on the tidal wave by opening the floodgates to people bolting into NZ because they want to live in squalor on a ‘working’ holiday!

    I think this was deliberately done by Labour to set up the next government with this IED.

    It is in the face of real unemployment at 11.2%. This lame-duck caretaker government and probably the next one too doesn’t really give a fuck about these people or the entire population of NZ or its future.

    In their economic ‘picture’ is, A low waged economy=Lower inflation! But, that can’t happen when you have to import all of your fuel! Forever inflation is here and the new settings the RBNZ are considering is looking likely to be set at 3%-5% as opposed to the current 1%-3% setting.

    Angry Little is a pretty shit minister for all of the things he is responsible for.

    “No More Labour Pains!”

  9. Politicians and the public of whatever stripe should be concerned with what goes on at the Ministry for Everything (MoBIE).

    Just off the top of my head, 3 fairly recent failures spring to mind.
    – Assurances, after an apology, that “dawn raids” weren’t continuing. For all intents and purposes they were, if not at dawn, at least with the same enforcement antics and targeting.

    – The very primitive MIQ lottery booking system affecting citizens and permanent residents wanting/NEEDING to return during lockdown. Even the first version of that stuff up could have been delivered within a short time but for managerial interference affecting project management and the willingness of developers/IT professionals to participate, (I know of one such person who walked out after a couple of days saying it was a complete shambles)

    – And now the Andrew Little whistle blower’s revelations that proper checks weren’t being done, and as a result, people were, AND ARE being seriously exploited. MoBIE runs the bloody Companies Register for God’s sake!
    There are big red flags that are getting missed – things you or I would consider worthy of looking into.

    I haven’t even touched on things like past, and possibly present staff turnover, or the “I’m not racist but they’re scum” James Casson.

    @Andrew Little – and anyone else lined up to take on the Immigration portfolio:

    Your “officials” are are least frugal with the truth and are seriously letting you AND their public servant underlings down. They’ve been telling you black is white and white is black when clearly evidence on the ground from those at the coal face has provided you with a number of known problems – for YEARS.

    Immigration NZ and The Labour Inspectorate need to be removed from the aegis of MoBIE and rebuilt from the ground up with proper ‘worker bee’ resourcing and less of the managerialist, know-it-all interference by those more interested in the self-preservation of maintaining their handsome salaries, impressive C.Vs, and LinkedIn profiles with endorsements from people they’re nice to. (Being a nice person by the way, does not necessarily equate to being competent or a good public servant ).

    There is SO much wrong with INZ and the LI, with resourcing where it matters, structurally and with policy.

    – Nobody has satisfactorily explained WHY visas need to be tied to a specific employer. There have been calls from advocacy groups for years as to why this is a bad idea. From academia, unions, immigration lawyers and advisors. The policy is a recipe for exploitation. Where huge amounts of money can be made by exploiting people, the opportunity will be taken.

    – And as an aside to the above:
    Is it such a good idea to allow (and at one time encourage) the vertical integration of immigration
    advice and selling application services with businesses providing anything from labour hire to security, to horticulture, to bloody beauty and hairdressing? If this isn’t clipping the ticket, I don’t know what is.
    Let’s not forget Dr. Christina Stringer’s research into exploitation, AND the recent contribution from the Productivity Commission. And while we’re on Stringer’s research and findings, some of her researchers
    thought they were being followed – shades of Thompson and Clarke being commissioned by senior public
    servants worried that some undesirables might be about to cause them grief.

    – Is it wise to have immigration and oversight for worker well being under a Ministry whose organisational culture and primary focus is business and economic growth? We may need imported doctors, nurses, educators, builders and IT professionals in the short to medium term and even longer while we train our own citizens and permanent residents. The unreasonable expectation is that their kin are treated as baggage. As we’ve seen, through immigration policies and enforcement, they are certainly not a priority.
    As a result, vast numbers of the immigrant community no longer feel committed to NZ or see it as home.
    That includes people who’ve not seem wives, husbands, children and others for years, and people who’ve
    been essential to seeing NZ through the Covid pandemic.
    NZ is now the 6th most desirable “civilised”, “developed” nation trying to attract skilled immigrants.
    There are also far more attractive places now for tertiary students to study.

    – Given that worker exploitation and various visa scams have become so prevalent, why has not MoBIE/INZ/LI used local media (such as Times of India, NDTV in India and other outlets elsewhere) to warn of the pitfalls, and to provide information on how best to apply for access to New Zealand across all classes of visa. Particularly so since the closure of INZ offices offshore, forcing the reliance on unscrupulous operators off and onshore, and often solely via online activity.

    The inquiry by the rebranded State Services Commissioner into the Accredited Employer Work Visa scheme’s processes is welcome, if well overdue.

    The inquiry is by no means broad enough. I hope once the inquiry is complete, you’ll treat it with an appropriate degree of cynicism given that Peter Hughes should have been aware of the Ministry’s multiple failures and taken action a long time ago.

    While I concede the Labour Inspectorate has been embarrassed into taking exploitation more seriously in recent times, I hope you’ll pay greater attention to those actually at the coalface alongside various of your “officials” who’ve now so obviously let you down.

  10. Labour are pathetic and unions are compromised.

    Unfortunately unions seem to have given up on NZ workers from the 1980’s (and NZ students) rights in favour of collaborating and protecting NZ based employers who are labour exploiters and bringing in more migrant workers to NZ who are big joiners of unions (I wonder why, free residency and benefits anyone, Ching, Ching). Since unions do such a crap job for native NZ workers then less and less are paying to be part of a union in NZ.

    Sadly this profit driven collaboration is a lose lose to NZ workers and NZ innovation and NZ decent employers and firms paying higher wages, who face constant problems competition increasingly with NZ employers running ponzis as they now expect and rely on their low wage business operating in NZ with labour that pays to be there not the other way around. Hard to win tenders when competitor employers not reply on cheap labour, and its allowed to win tenders under the assumption that they will just acquire their competitors workers or bring in anyone cheap they can find from overseas. (Labtests, NZ bus, construction, horticulture, farming).

    Note that Andrew Little seems to blame the immigration department not the migrant employer who bought in the 50 workers who have no work for them. OK someone signed up to those 50 workers but apparently they are not the first call to prosecute!!!!

    Labeen and Little seem to not be able to work out that that NZ workers and voters are fed up with NZ benefits and visas given away to migrants who bought their way into NZ using criminals, and the Labour and Greens essentially allow this as a legitimate way to get free visas, NZ benefits and charity here.

    How many deportations, jail and fines under urgency for exploiter employers in NZ under Labour and Greens? Wink, wink, not a priority, more that overseas workers can come to NZ easily rather than protecting NZ workers and NZ social security like housing, health and social welfare.

    Weirdly the headline in woke media was not about the exploiter employer but implying that the landlord had something to do with it. Not sure if the exploiter employer owns the house, but feel that it is unlikely that a NZ landlord would allow 50 people to live in their rental if they knew about it. Normally 8 people max in a 3 bedroom house!

    100,000 more migrants came to NZ last year, many very low waged or have no jobs like these migrants. Did Labour build 100,000+ low cost housing for their visas? Nope!

    Then expects the nations workers to work harder and pay more tax, for the never ending supply of low paid workers who are being trafficked here which they are involved in by their inaction and constantly require taxpayer money as they are too woke to put them on a flight back to their home country upon finding that they got into NZ illegally and have no jobs which having a job was their condition of entry into NZ.

    • The migrants know that they are paying for a job in NZ, as they were asked for $20k each for the job!

      That they didn’t get the fake job, doesn’t discount that they were essentially buying work here, as they did not meet the criteria to come here and work.

      Seems like dual labour laws and illegal workers in NZ are being passively enforced by NZ government and unions.

      ACC for the illegal migrants widows family when somehow migrants pay no tax or ACC but nobody is prosecuted for this death!

      Is it that Wokesafe only go after NZ employers as they are easy targets?

      Which is harder to prevent a volcano in White Island or an illegal worker working on a construction site in Auckland that dies with pathetic safety? Seems like wokesafe have no issues with illegal workers in construction getting killed and working in NZ as they failed to prosecute. Note another worker who worked for a legitimate NZ firm and was injured in a scaffolding accident were prosecuted, but curious why an illegal worker who died, then the scaffolding firm were not prosecuted?

      Ignoring workplace deaths of migrants by migrants is part of dual labour law NZ.

      Nobody likes dual laws and justice thus another reason why people are preferring OZ to work in.

  11. 13.2 billion to push through a separate health system, but the immigration department seems deliberately underfunded in NZ by governments here.

    Immigration New Zealand budget blowout kept overstayers in NZ

    “Investigators joke about having a ‘whip around’ or ‘raffles’ to pay for deporting target after budget blowout, according to Immigration NZ emails.
    Immigration New Zealand was forced to stop deporting all but the riskiest illegal immigrants after a budget blowout earlier this year.

    No one was to be deported unless they were named on a list created by Immigration management when the funding shortfall was discovered in January.

    On the list were 22 inmates due to be released from prison, 48 alleged criminals and 14 individuals whose refugee claims had been rejected.

    It would cost $564,883 to deport all of them.”

    NZ government don’t supply the funding and under woke management don’t seem to check anything.

    Immigration like the DHB’s was also another government department that employed Yuvaraj Krishnan

  12. Can’t argue. But isn’t this migrant worker exploitation a bit more nuanced? Yes, failure of local checks and balances, but in many cases, unscrupulous agents in source countries. What would be useful is to find out is the nature of the relationship between overseas agents and a good many of the local accredicated employers. But you’re correct MB. Overseas labour to fill skill shortages is in most instances a farce constructed to benefit profit takers.

  13. Weird how NZ workers who lose their life savings of hundreds of thousands of dollars in bank and other scams get cold shoulder from the political class here – also woman who are beaten up and victims of violent crime here seem to have no value politically to Labour, no help or sympathy to these victims.

    But as soon as a migrant who in not a NZ citizen or even a legal resident loses $20k, government ministers jump to the rescue with taxpayer funded support packages, free visas and housing!

    Clear who they value and who their priority is for taxpayer funds.

    Not NZ citizens, woman victims and NZ workers with real jobs.

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