Cyclone 3 - Maximising No's of People at Work/Support for Businesses

As the week unfolds our focus has been on helping Employers as they restore operations and get as many people back to work as possible.  Some of these Employers have lost homes and some have staff who are faced with this reality.  In amongst these challenges is a motivation to try and preserve as many jobs as possible to support business and economic recovery for the longer term. 

Home to work travel times particularly remains a challenge with the number of road closures.   Work arounds include carpooling to reduce the number of vehicles on the road and adjusting start and finish times to avoid the worst of peak periods.  Consideration could also be given to changing working days until more roads are opened.  Key is that whatever changes are considered are consulted on before any decisions are made and variations issued where the changes have a direct impact on terms and conditions of employment.   

Auto extension of medical certifications for injuries -  ACC have announced they are automatically extending medical certificates for most people in impacted regions meaning they do not need to see a Doctor or Medical Practitioner if their certificate is about to expire.  The advice we have received from ACC is that the auto extensions are 2 weeks for medical certificates that expire between 12 - 28th February except in the case of a "partnered recovery" which are being extended for 4 weeks.

Out of character behaviours have appeared with cases we have been involved in ranging from absence without notification right through to physical assault.  

Normal processes and employment laws apply, so as much as Employers need to consider each case on its merits, employees also have their normal obligations.   

We have seen instances of people badly impacted simply walking off the job without giving notice.  While this is an understandable reaction given some of the terrible circumstances faced, it has left some employers in a difficult position.  Employers are obligated to pay for hours worked.  If you are thinking about making deductions from final pay for notice periods not worked, please contact us for advice, this action can be risky.   

If you are experiencing any issues with any members of your team, get in touch with Grow HR. 

New Government Support Available 

MSD – support for individuals and support for businesses.   If you need to connect with a business broker at MSD get in touch with one of the Grow HR team for contact details.

ACC - are covering the cost of any additional payments (e.g. surcharges) people would usually have to pay for treatment between 19 February and 19 March 2023.   

MPI – Cyclone Recovery Grant - support for farmers, growers, whenua Māori owners and rural communities.    The Government’s $50 million aid package for primary industry is administered by MPI.  The Cyclone recovery grant application form is here.     To complete the application you will need your NZBN number.  To find your NZBN number enter your business name here. To find your property’s LINZ number, enter your details here.  Your GST number is the same as your IRD number and can be found by logging into MyIR

For other Government support see our previous Cyclone updates.

Support from Banks

Most banks have put together a one-off payment/package, please see the links below for your bank and what they are offering:  

• ANZ  

• Westpac  

• BNZ  

• ASB  

• Co-operative  

• KiwiBank