ABSTRACT: The minimum wage is currently $18.93 an hour, or $37,398 a year, and is not a “living wage”, apparently. It is more like a dying wage, probably, because anyone who earns it is living a miserable life not worth living, well below the poverty line, regardless of whether they live with other people who earn more, or whether they live in a regional town or a big city.
This is according to the superior wisdom of Sally McManus, federal secretary of the ACTU.
“Australia desperately needs a pay rise,” the ACTU website says. A pay rise — who can disagree? Our latest national account figures do show lower household spending, and this is because “a lack of fair pay rises is holding our economy back”. After all, wage increases for the lowest-paid “stimulate demand and can get our economy moving again”…
SOURCE: Katrina Grace Kelly. “If ACTU’s right, let’s aim for a much higher minimum wage.” The Australian, 16 March 2019.
ABSTRACT: Momentum is growing ahead of the federal election for the minimum wage to be replaced. Here’s what it would mean for Australia’s lowest paid workers.
Australia’s wage stagnation has put the concept of a living wage firmly on the political agenda.
The Fair Work Commission’s annual review of the minimum wage has prompted calls for the nation’s 2.2 million lowest-paid workers to be given a hefty pay rise in line with a living wage…
SOURCE: Rosemary Bolger. “What is a ‘living wage’ and is it the answer for Australia’s working poor?.” SBS News, 15 March 2019.
ABSTRACT: Unlike tax cuts, raising Newstart and the minimum wage will effectively reduce poverty and boost the economy, argues The Australian Council of Social Service’s submission to the Fair Work Commission.
CEO of the Australian Council of Social Service, Cassandra Goldie, said: “Instead of handing out tax cuts as misguided election sweeteners, the government should take real action to tackle poverty and strengthen the economy.
“Both an urgent $75 per week rise in Newstart and a substantial rise in minimum wages are the fundamental steps we must take in any serious effort to reducing poverty…
SOURCE: “Not time for more tax cuts: time to boost Newstart and minimum wages.” ACOSS, 18 March 2019.
ABSTRACT: Politicians of all hues, policy researchers, economists, the union movement, business groups and the Reserve Bank of Australia concur that stagnant wages is one of the nation’s most pressing problems. Household spending accounts for more than half the economy; several years of low real (after inflation) wages is shackling growth, bringing the prospect of the first recession in three decades.
While there is consensus about the problem, there is none about the solution. Business and the RBA argue productivity increases are essential to underpin higher wages without reducing profit and returns to shareholders. But productivity increases have exceeded wage increases since the turn of the century. The Coalition government holds that reducing corporate taxes and maintaining wages flexibility and enterprise bargaining will trickle down to workers in the form of increased wages…
SOURCE: The Age. “Wage rises are a fine economic tonic.” The Age, 20 March 2019.
Produced by the librarians at the Brotherhood of St Laurence in Melbourne, Australia