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Wage rise for millions of Australia’s lowest paid workers
Lois Lee | 승인 2019.06.06 14:24

The national minimum wage will rise for Australia’s lowest paid workers, with a $21.60 a week pay rise. 

The new weekly wage of $740.80 will come into effect from 1 July as announced by the Fair Work Commission.  

Approximately 2.2 million workers will benefit from the Commission’s decision, as they will welcome a new hourly minimum of $19.49, earning extra $21.60 per week or $1090 a year. 

However, even though this is a three per cent rise, it is smaller than the six per cent rise Australian unions have been calling for. The six per cent rise would’ve increased the weekly wage to an extra $42 per week. 

On the other hand, business groups have been advocating for a two per cent rise to an extra $14.40 per week. 

“This is a welcome pay rise for millions of low paid workers, especially in the face of further penalty rate cuts in a few weeks,” Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) assistant secretary Liam O’Brien said. “We have a long way to go to ensure that the minimum wage is enough for workers to live on and support their families.”

“No one in Australia should be living in poverty while working full time, but we know that thousands of people are facing this reality,” Mr O’Brien added. 

This year’s wage rise is also smaller than last year’s 3.5 per cent rise and 2017’s 3.3 per cent rise, due to economic conditions. 

Fair Work Commission president Iain Ross said the recent drops in gross domestic product growth and inflation were big factors in the smaller wage rise. 

“We are satisfied that the level of increase we have decided upon will not lead to any adverse inflationary outcome and nor will it have any measurable negative impact on employment,’’ Mr Ross said.
“However, such an increase will mean an improvement in real wages for those employees who are reliant on the national minimum wage and modern award minimum wages and an improvement in their living standards,” Mr Ross added. 
Employees who will benefit from the decision include hospitality workers, cleaners, retail staff, factory process workers, restaurant workers and security guards. 

Lois Lee  edit@hanhodaily.com

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