*** Living Wage Aotearoa New Zealand have just announced the reviewed Living Wage Rate for 2018 is $20.55 an hour. ***
It all comes down to whether you think someone who works should be able to afford to live a decent life. Living includes not only shelter and food but the ability to participate in their community.
In the Mayor’s 10 Year Plan proposal he sought to bring in a minimum wage for council staff of $20 per hour, effective April 2018. This was thrown out in favour of a staged implentation of $1 an hour for the next four years to keep up with the government intention for the minimum wage to be $20 in 2021.
If you want to see who voted against bringing the minimum wage increase forward, check out http://dorringtonwright.co.nz/index.php/10yearplan-25/ (it might surprise you).
As of April 1st, the Minimum wage in New Zealand is $16.50. From April 4th, the 2018 Living wage rate is $20.55. The Living wage is the rate you need to earn to be able to live. A minimum wage is a random figure.
I’d love you to join me in telling the Mayor and Councillors that Hamilton City Council staff (and in fact EVERY employee) deserve to be able to pay their bills and therefore need to be on a Living wage. I recommend the Hamilton City Council might make savings by reigning in excessive executive pays to afford to do so. Currently 81 staff earn over $100,000 a year – I think they should be sharing a piece of the pie.
Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch City Councils have already shown leadership in movement to a living wage for employees and Hamilton should follow suit. The current proposal for a staged implementation of a minimum wage increase is not enough. The rates will be irrelevant in 4 years time as costs of living continue to increase. The hope is that leadership in the public sector will continue to encourage other employers to follow suit.
The Waikato Living Wage Aotearoa New Zealand are fantastic (volunteer) local advocates so lend them some support as they help you, and our friends be able to live better lives.