This update sets out arrangements the Employment Relations Authority has made to deal with applications and investigations as part of the COVID-19 response.
This replaces all previous updates.
In-person investigation meetings
Parties, representatives and witnesses attending an in-person investigation meeting are not required to wear a face mask, but may do so if they so wish.
Other means of attendance when needed for health reason
Where a party, representative or witness cannot attend an in-person investigation meeting for a health reason or because they are required to isolate, the Authority will consider other ways to give them an opportunity to take part in the investigation. This may include connection by telephone or audio-visual link (including by “Zoom” and “Teams”). In some cases, it may be necessary to adjourn the matter until suitable arrangements for attendance in person can be made.
Some meetings by audio-visual link, telephone or on the papers
The Authority may carry out investigations of some matters by telephone or audio-visual link or by considering written evidence and written submissions only.
Health and safety requirements
For in-person investigation meetings
The Authority is committed to keeping parties, representatives and witnesses safe during in-person investigation meetings.
Any additional guidance in response to COVID-19 may be issued to parties and representatives in advance of investigation meetings.
Lodging new applications
Parties and representatives are encouraged to lodge new applications to the Authority online or as an attachment to an email.
Contacting Authority offices
The Authority’s administrative staff are available by email to deal with queries about matters. In Tāmaki Makaurau, email firstname.lastname@example.org. In Te Whanganui-a-Tara, email email@example.com. In Ōtautahi, email firstname.lastname@example.org. In all emails please include, where known, the seven-digit file number in the subject line as well as the parties’ names.
Case management conferences
Authority Members will convene case management conferences by telephone with parties or their representatives to discuss arrangements for dealing with new applications, including urgent applications.
If parties cannot meet their timetabling obligations they should promptly bring this to the Authority’s attention.
Directions to mediation
Parties and representatives are expected to comply with any direction made by the Authority to mediation and to co-operate in taking part in mediation by whatever means the mediator decides is appropriate under s 147 of the Act.