Samoan seasonal workers

Seasonal workers depart Samoa for New Zealand

Close to 780 Samoan workers in total will head across over January and February to take part in the 2021 horticulture and viticulture season.

The Samoan cohort is part of a group of 2,000 Pacific RSE workers expected to arrive in New Zealand over the coming months.

The RSE Scheme enables the flow of much needed income and skills between New Zealand and their Pacific neighbours.

 

Photo New Zealand High Commission Caption: Seasonal workers at the airport in Samoa  

     

Samoan seasonal workers prepare to leave for NZ

Samoa's Ministry of Commerce and Industry said 600 more workers will begin orientation training soon and will travel on two more flights before the end of this month.

"The workers will be employed by six companies in horticulture, and all travel and accommodation is being provided by these companies," according to Ministry official Lemalu Nele Leilua.

"These expenses are paid by the companies and do not affect the workers take home pay," she said.

Samoan seasonal workers involved in fatal crash in New Zealand

Eleven people, including the deceased, were in the van when the crash with the truck occurred.

A statement said a number of those people in the van were Samoan nationals, who were in New Zealand working as seasonal workers.

One New Zealander was also in the van.

The New Zealand Herald reports the occupants were on their way to Taupo for a holiday.

Police are liaising with the Samoan High Commission to notify the families of those involved in today's tragic crash.

Concern in New Zealand for welfare of stranded Samoan workers

Their work for the Johnny Appleseed company finishes on Friday but they have to pay an extra six weeks' accommodation and medical insurance, costing nearly $US600.

An aunt of one of the workers said they are now subsisting on the cheapest, nutrient poor food with their savings being eroded the longer they stay.

A New Zealand government policy to help workers in this situation does not start until July.

Immigration NZ authorities said a process to help seasonal workers move to other employers has been established but the aunt said it has not been offered to the men.

Samoa to ensure seasonal workers are fitter

The mandatory testing is made possible under the Labour Mobility Assistance Program, which is funded by Australia.

It is targeted at those who apply for seasonal work under Australia's Seasonal Workers Program, and the New Zealand Recognised Seasonal Employers scheme.

The chief executive of the Ministry of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Agafili Tomaimano Shem Leo, says it is essential they send the best possible people each time - people who are physically and mentally fit and strong because it will encourage employers to seek more workers from Samoa in the future.