Unions deliver MPs petition to stop real terms cuts to the minimum wage

Today a delegation from the union movement delivered a petition of nearly 9,000 people calling on the Government to commit to annual minimum wage increases that keep up with rising costs.

“This Government is effectively cutting the wages of low-income families by not increasing the minimum wage to keep up with rising costs. This is on top of getting rid of free prescription fees, scrapping support for public transport fees, and increasing benefit sanctions,” said CTU President Richard Wagstaff.

“This petition sends a clear message to this Government that all workers have the right to a liveable income to support their families.

“We appreciated hearing from workers in homecare and retail at Parliament today about the reality of what it’s like living on the minimum wage. In response, Labour, Green and Te Pāti Māori MPs committed that they would deliver significant increases to the minimum wage when they are in government.

“The Government has a responsibility to ensure that all workers have enough to afford rent, pay the bills, put good food on the table, and buy their kids what they need. This is even more true during a cost-of-living crisis.

“How are workers meant to keep up with rising food and rent costs when the Government is cutting their wages in real terms?

“All workers should be paid more than the Living Wage, but at the very least, the Government must ensure that the minimum wage is enough to get by. Pushing wages backwards at a time when so many are doing it tough is simply heartless,” said Wagstaff.

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