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News in brief, March 16, 2023

Teachers strike

Schools are closed today as up to 50,000 teachers across New Zealand go on strike for better employment agreements. Wairarapa kindy teachers, primary school teachers and principals, and college teachers are protesting in Featherston and Masterton, and some will travel to the larger protest in Wellington. Local secondary school union representative Ryan McCroskery said secondary school teachers were asking for more specialist teachers, more pastoral staff, and a pay increase to match inflation. He said the last pay offer from the Ministry of Education was a 10 per cent pay cut, accounting for inflation.

He said his protest sign today would read, “teachers teach for fame and fortune … said no teacher ever.”

Goat cull

delayed

Waka Kotahi NZTA has cancelled its plan to close SH2 Remutaka Hill Rd for feral goat culling. The Remutaka Hill Rd was scheduled to be closed from Monday to Thursday, between 9.30am and 10.30am, but the cull has been cancelled due to expected poor weather. Waka Kotahi said it needed fine weather on four consecutive days for the culling to go ahead. The new date for the cull operation is not yet confirmed.

Serious assaults

Police are investigating two separate assaults in Masterton that left two people suffering injuries. Police attended a Masterton property shortly after 10pm on Tuesday after reports of a serious assault and found one person with minor injuries. Reports of a grievous assault less than 12 hours later saw police at another Masterton property yesterday morning at 8am. A police spokesperson said both incidents were family harm related. They did not confirm whether any charges had been laid. Police investigations were underway for both incidents.

Cars collide

outside Hell

The drivers involved in a two-car crash outside Masterton Hells Pizza have escaped injury. Emergency services responded to the collision on Queen St at 6.15pm on Tuesday. A police spokesperson confirmed there were no reports of injury.

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