The minimum wage rise of 3% awarded by the Fair Work Commission today equates to a 57 cent per hour increase and will not be enough to make a real difference in the financial position of low paid workers, said the peak body for workers in Tasmania.
Unions had campaigned for a wage increase of $43 per week which would see the minimum wage on a path towards becoming a living wage - 60% of the median full-time wage.
“While workers who are struggling on award wages will welcome any extra money in their pay packets, this rise falls well short of what we know is needed to raise the minimum wage to a living wage,” said Jessica Munday, Unions Tasmania Secretary.
“The rise is only 3% this year, down from 3.5% in 2018 and we have no evidence that our members are struggling any less now than they were last year. We also need to remember that 700,000 workers in retail and hospitality stand to lose more pay when penalty rates are cut again by 10% on the 1st of July.”
“The initial reactions from our members is that this decision is woefully inadequate.”
Ms Munday said members on low wages are making tough decisions every day between paying for essentials like housing and power or putting food on the table.
“Tasmanian workers need decent wages to stop their living standards continuing to go backwards. The best way for workers to improve their wages and conditions is to join their union,” said Ms Munday.
For further information contact Jessica Munday on 0417 454 809