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craig pomare mta ce3

CE Comment April

Everyone in New Zealand was shocked and saddened by the killings in two Christchurch mosques. MTA is doing what it can to help.

Christchurch shooting

The past few weeks have been extremely rough for all New Zealand, but particularly for the people of Christchurch. We have all been affected by the murders of 50 men, women and children in the two mosques and the wounding of a further 50.

MTA has reached out to members in Christchurch to offer support to them, their staff and families. We are offering them free access to confidential counselling via the EAP (Employer Assistance Programme). Other members (and their staff and families) in wider New Zealand who may have known those who died or were injured can also use this service. Please contact EAP directly on 0800 327 669, dial 2 to make a booking, and say you’re from MTA. If there is anything else we can do, please call our MTA number 0800 00 1144.

We have also expressed our sympathy to the leaders of the two mosques affected and provided them with MTA vouchers. We hope this practical donation is useful to the Muslim community over the coming months.

Trade training

The government reform of trade training kicked off with a call for responses to its discussion document. MTA has made its submission and you can read more about that in next month’s Radiator. In brief, we called for improvement to both student and employer support, for industry to have a strong voice in training, and for funding to reflect employers’ contributions to training. We also want the new system to recognise that skills and qualifications aren’t always the same thing, and both need to be catered for. MTA is also asking members for information that will help us to develop our case over the coming year. There will be a lot more discussion to come and your experience and knowledge is needed. Please check out our survey on the Toolbox (sign in to the Member page at www.mta.org.nz). The survey will remain live for another month or so.

Wild night out in Waipukurau

My thanks to the chair of the Eastland region, Grant Lower, for arranging a meeting in Waipukurau last month. It was fantastic, and not just because there were three desserts on offer! MTA President Dave Harris and I met up with around 30 members who were keen to hear what we were up to and give some feedback. We talked about the work MTA was doing in trades training, including setting up our own group apprenticeship scheme; member wellbeing; and the development of our app for WoF inspections. The app is in the final stages of testing. When it goes live, technicians will be able to use the app to upload and download information between NZTA’s WoF Online. You can also email a copy of the check sheet to the customer. Data from all your vehicle inspections is also saved into a cloud database. News of the app was a big hit with everyone at the meeting. It will certainly save on double handling of data: using a paper check sheet and then entering the information online.

The evening also brought together MTA members who were interested in joining the region’s executive committee. Three people put up their hands for the Eastland committee and will be attending their first meeting in a month or so.

I encourage anyone who wants to provide their experience and knowledge to the sector to get in touch with their regional coordinator. Lots of meetings and social get-togethers are held in each region and new blood and fresh ideas are always welcome.

VTNZ expanding

VTNZ is building up its Certified Repairer network, which is timely as some MTA members tell me they are considering getting out of WoF inspections. The NZTA crackdown, increasing costs of specialist equipment needed to carry out warrants, and the scarcity of WoF inspectors are all creating pressure on some workshops. The Certified Repairer network means that members can turn all their vehicle inspections over to VTNZ and in return VTNZ refers customers needing repairs on to the repairers.