Whistleblower guard stood down by Armourguard Security

Whistleblower guard stood down by Armourguard Security

Armourguard Security have stood down a security guard from a WINZ site because he complained to his union that the company was not taking the guards health and safety seriously.

Unite union delegate Dave Toopis checking IDs at Otara Work and Income.

Dave Toopi, a Unite delegate and union executive member, complained to his union that the new ID check procedure being demanded of WINZ clients put the guards at risk because they have to act at receptionists as well as guards.

Guards are expected to stop all clients, check if they have ID, check if they have an appointment and the time of the appointment. They are holding a folder with sheets of names and appointment times. This creates holdups during busy periods. 

The union believes that this can create unnecessary tension between the clients and the guards. The guards are also in a vulnerable position when doing paperwork for WINZ and not in a position to react quickly.

Clients are often in an agitated state given the culture of denial of people's entitlements that the government has encouraged among the management staff.

Over the last decade, this has seen the number of working age people accessing welfare support fall by 5% when the unemployment rate only fell 2%.

Security Guards at Armourguard also had their RTs taken off them as a cost saving exercise. There is also no one button emergency communication mechanism available to all guards at the company as recommended by the coroner following the death of a security guard in 2013. 

These workers are barely paid above the minimum wage yet are expected to be multitasking machines. 

Unite will not accept having our member being made a victim of for standing up for the rights of his fellow workers.

For comment contact Mike Treen

National Director
Unite Union
09 8452132 ext 20
029 5254744

Related: Union Anger at MSD ID crackdown