Lately many stories have been popping up in other media pimping the poor, hard working people on struggle street, and I really hate using this word relating to anything in NZ…..poverty. ¬†We’ve heard all sorts of stories about poverty. Child poverty, beneficiary poverty, working class poverty, and on it goes. We also hear constantly by those sad faced families sitting on the couch with their 15 kids surrounded by luxuries like sky remotes, xboxes, playstations etc hear how hard it is and that it is all the current Governments fault.
But what we never seem to hear about is journalism poverty. The kind where the National Government is neglecting the journalism community by failing to provide them with a “living wage” of newsworthy material. So much so, they’re having to resort to the desperate means of manufacturing and fabricating the news to fill the newsprint and web pages.
A few days ago Andrea Vance, Michael Fox and Siobhan Downes from Fairfax published one such story ¬†called “Economy rockstars or roadies?“about several working couples who were struggling to make ends meet and having to go without luxuries like alcohol and movie tickets, but there is one part of the article about a particular couple that requires some special attention.
Hawera nurse Anna Tairawhiti is another who hasn’t seen any extra in her pay packet in almost seven years. The medical practice where she works restructured last year but despite the upheaval, and having to re-apply for her job, still no rise.
Her husband – a truck driver who works “shockingly long hours” – got an extra 50c an hour last year. With interest rates set to rise, the family must do without little luxuries such as movie tickets for their teenage children, and alcohol.
“I’ve asked numerous times [for a raise] . . . I’m pretty much sitting [on the pay scale] not much higher than a new grad[uate], even though I’ve got nearly 15 years’ nursing experience. They lay the guilt on that there is not enough money,” Tairawhiti says.
Tairawhiti and Manson are not alone – almost half of workers did not receive a pay rise last year, according to the latest Fairfax Media-Ipsos poll.
Right, so lets pick apart the incomes and circumstance of Mrs “Tairawhiti”¬†and her husband to put some things into perspective here. Mrs Tairawhiti ¬†says “¬†I’m pretty much sitting [on the pay scale] not much higher than a new grad[uate],¬†even though I’ve got nearly 15 years’ nursing experience”.¬†
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