Minimum wages to increase by 3.3%
Ross Greenwood: The number to remember is $36,134 a year…before tax.
That’s the new minimum wage.
The Fair Work Commission today gave the lowest paid a big leg up.
But, the bosses are not happy.
Ross: The pay rise works out at 3.3 per cent, almost twice the 1.9 per cent that average wages are rising by.
It’s more than prices are rising, inflation is 2.1 per cent
Jenny Lambert: we are really concerned about the impact on jobs, particularly first jobs.
Ross: In Australia, more than 12 million people have a job. But of those, 2.3 million are on the minimum wage. Though this increase today seems generous, the price of insurance, gas and rent has all been rising many times faster.
The Fair Work Commission does admit that some low paid will be left behind.
Justice Iain Ross: We acknowledge that the increase we purpose will not lift all award reliant employees out of poverty.
Sally McManus: No one in Australia should be living in poverty and working a full time job.
Ross: But to find out what it’s like to live close to the minimum wage, you have to go to lunch.
Vox Pops: Grace…Eli Monk…Monique…Maddie…Alana…Kristy…
Ross: And what are you all studying?
Vox Pops: Beauty therapy…
Food, expenses, just doing things like activities on the weekend – you don’t actually have enough money to pay for your rent.
Ross: All of them working, and training, trying to climb the salary ladder.
Vox Pops: Well, yeah…you have to educate yourself but that in itself is expensive.
Ross: Who’s paying for lunch today?
Vox pops: Our parents…we have to make our own food…we don’t have enough money to buy it…
You gotta do that $4.10 for coffee and that’s it and that’s about it…yeah…
$4.10 for a coffee, that’s ridiculous
Ross: Ross Greenwood; Nine News.