While most of the world recognises the 1st of May as International Workers Day, here in NZ young workers have nothing to celebrate. Law changes from the government that would love to see wages drop come in to effect today, as described in yesterday’s press release from the Same Work Same Pay campaign:
Young people facing massive pay cut tomorrow
The Government will cut the minimum wage by 20% for young people tomorrow, amid calls from opponents that it won’t help the youth unemployment crisis and will cause genuine hardship.
The campaign set up to oppose the re-introduction of youth rates, Same Work Same Pay, says tomorrow is a sad day for young people in New Zealand who aren’t getting the support they need to get ahead.
Campaign Spokesperson James Sleep says “the Government will tomorrow cut the pay of young workers. With youth unemployment at crisis levels the Government is blindly implementing legislation that won’t create jobs and solve this. Cutting the pay of young people will create genuine hardship amongst thousands of young workers and their families.”
Sleep says the Government is missing the opportunity to seriously bring down youth unemployment, by failing to invest in programmes that provide young people with well supported training and job opportunities.
“Cutting the pay of young people is not a step up, it’s yet another step down for young New Zealanders who are struggling to get into work, education and training. To address youth unemployment we need a Government that is prepared to invest in younger generations, not cut their pay and cut important services that exist to get them into work or training.” …
From an earlier press release:
Same Work Same Pay campaign spokesperson James Sleep … says the Government is wasting a significant amount of time on a policy that has failed in the past to create jobs.
“Analysis from Government officials suggest the policy will have very little effect on tackling unemployment. Officials also note that the Government did not consider any other options for tackling the issue of youth unemployment.”
“Youth rates failed to create jobs in 1990 when youth unemployment reached an all time high. National need to pull all levers of Government to deliver apprenticeships, Government supported job placements, comprehensive employment support for all young people and better access to higher education.”
Sleep says the burden of the Government’s failure to drive job growth is now being put on young people.
“The youth unemployment population is big enough to fill the city of Palmerston North. These people need well supported and sustainable jobs, training or further education. The Government’s lack of action is now being placed on the shoulders of Generations Y and Z.”
Attached: FAQ and economic analysis of the bill
Same Work Same Pay is supporting protest action planned in Auckland, including an 8:30am rally outside Pack’n Save (which plans to implement youth rates). Once again kudos to those good employers who are not cutting wages.