Labor Government Calls For Fair Wages

The Andrews Labor Government’s submission to the Fair Work Commission’s Annual Wage Review has called for a pay increase for the one in six Victorian workers on the minimum wage.

The Labor Government’s submission shows that an economically sustainable increase to the National Minimum Wage (NWM) and award wages would address growing inequality, while at the same time maintaining employment and economic growth.

In handing down its review last year, the Fair Work Commission found that while real earnings have generally increased over the past decade, earnings inequality was increasing.

With award rates generally at 50 per cent or less of average weekly earnings, the gap was contributing to a reduction in the living standards of low income earners and an erosion in the value of minimum wages when compared with average earnings.

Minister for Industrial Relations, Natalie Hutchins, said that there was a clear body of evidence that showed low wage industries faced difficulties in attracting and retaining staff, resulting in increased turnover rates.

Ms Hutchins said that by increasing the minimum and award wages, employees will be more invested in and satisfied with their job, and employers will have their costly turnover rates reduced.

The Labor Government is committed to working with employers and employees alike to achieve fair, sustainable wages and increased productivity for the state’s economy.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Industrial Relations, Natalie Hutchins

“The Andrews Labor Government will always stand up for the value and dignity of work. We want to see all Victorian workers safe, secure and paid fairly.”

“We’ll work with employees and employers to achieve better wages and conditions, and to support jobs and growth in our economy.”