Court staff in walk-out

Court sittings in Christchurch came to a sudden stop mid-morning on Friday when PSA members and Court Security Officers walked out in support of their pay claim.

Without registrars and security, courts had to stop and the Justice Precinct was closed for about three hours.

Members protested with placards outside the building.

The staff began their industrial action two weeks ago with a two-hour strike, and have been continuing with effective rolling strikes every day since.

All staff have been working to rule, taking their breaks at the same time so that courts have to stop, and refusing overtime so there have been no sittings past 4.30pm.

The Precinct has been closed every day from 12.30pm to 1.30pm while staff were all away at lunch.

Today, the staff walked off the job before 11am and were to stay out until the Precinct reopened at 1.30pm to deal with the afternoon’s business and possibly try to catch up on some of the morning cases that had been delayed.

The rolling stoppages have been taking place around the country and one day this week the court at Manukau in South Auckland was shut for the day when staff walked out.