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“Disappointing”: minimum wage decision

THE ACTU called today’s minimum wage decision disappointing.

In its annual minimum wage review the Fair Work Commission decided to raise the minimum wage by just $15.80 a week.

The ACTU wanted to see a wage rise of $30 a week.

Yesterday ACTU Secretary Dave Oliver said the decision was a kick in the guts for 1.5 million low paid workers and their families and it would druthers widen the gap between low paid and average earnings.

We are stunned that today the Commission has acknowledged that wage inequality is rising in Australia but it has done absolutely nothing about it. In fact, after this decision, it will only get worse,” Mr Oliver said.

“On top of that, Australia has had its best year of productivity growth in a decade, and yet again, low paid workers have nothing to show for that. “As a result of this decision, the national minimum wage will continue falling as a percentage of average weekly earnings, from 50% in 2000, to 43.4% last year, and now to 42.7%.”

Mr Oliver said minimum wage workers had little bargaining power, with the annual wage case often their only chance for a pay rise.

Read the ACTU’s full media release here.

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