More money for everyone!

The Green Party would like to raise the minimum wage.  As we saw the other day the minimum wage is paid to only 2.4% of the New Zealand workforce, and it is to cover jobs that are, in general, entry level jobs.

Other centrepieces of the Green Party’s workers policy are an immediate increase in the minimum wage to $15 an hour by December, and annual increases up to $18 an hour by 2017. It is also committed to paying core public sector workers the living wage of $18.80 an hour.

The changes would eventually give a person an extra $6400 a year, or $125 a week.

The Greens also want a compulsory redundancy payout of four weeks’ wages, and to scrap youth wages, 90-day trials for new workers, and The Hobbit laws that make screen workers contractors — and ineligible for collective bargaining — by default.

The National Party was quick to dismiss these measures as costing thousands of jobs and putting up more roadblocks for businesses.

The Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment estimates that an immediate increase to a minimum wage of $18 an hour could cost up to 16,250 jobs — although economic conditions could be different by 2017.

But Mrs Turei dismissed this: “In the US, there are 13 states that have just raised the minimum wage. It’s good for the economy, it’s good for families. There hasn’t been a significant drop in jobs.

“Companies will need to pay more to their workers, and therefore their profits will go down slightly. In return, they get a more stable workforce, better productivity and greater commitment.

If you are on minimum wage, and you stay on minimum wage and you can’t find any other jobs that  pay better than minimum wage, then you’re a barely functional useless person.  

Cleaner Charmaine Reihana, who was at the policy launch, said living on the minimum wage of $14.25 and supporting two children was impossible.

She had recently been given a raise to $14.60 an hour.

“We got more bread on the table, more milk in the fridge, but just surviving. It sux.

(Just a question, how did Derek Chen know that Charmaine said “sux” instead of “sucks” when he interviewed her?  Weird)

“It’s very hard to try and put money aside for rent, power, forget about a phone. No landline, no internet for the kids.

“And even tougher for my kids, because I’m never home … My neighbours look after my kids, thank God for them.”

Here’s an idea:  if you can’t afford children don’t have them.   Contraception is very cheap, often nearly free.   Why should society have to adjust for your bad decisions?  Keep your legs together love.

Lo Boca Loca restaurant owner Lucas Putnam says paying his staff the living wage has added about $1000 a week to his business costs, but workers are more committed and working harder as a result.

“People before profit,” he said.

Restaurants paying their staff minimum wage are by far in the minority.  So Lucas Putnam is trying to make it look like he’s a hero when he’s been a stingy bastard all this time.  Good one Lucas.

Youth wages and minimum wages have a role in our economy.  It’s to allow people to get started out.  If you are still on minimum wage when your 42, you’re doing something wrong.


in US$

We already pay our disaffected lazy and useless layabouts with the 3rd highest minimum wages in the whole world.  Look at Australia right now – they could afford this luxury when the mines were paying for it.  Mines collapsed, and now they have a huge millstone around their necks.

Next, France.  ‘neuff said.

Then New Zealand.   This is not a league table we want to be leading – it will lead to greater youth unemployment and provide yet another drain on real the taxpayers at large.   Keeping in mind that people on minimum wage with two children, like Charmaine, are already not paying any net income taxes in the first place.


– Derek Cheng, APNZ, via NZ Herald

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