Raising the living wage is a big part of the picture of decent work

E tū welcomes the living wage increase to $23.65 an hour, the new rate for 2022/23.

Beginning Thursday, September 1, all certified Living Wage employers are required to pay their workers — either directly employed or under contract — a minimum of $23.65 per hour.

Josephine Wiredu, a member of E tū and housekeeper at Auckland Council, says living wage has made a huge difference for her.

“It has kept me from working long hours – more weekend work, more stress and fatigue. I can look after my well-being and spend more quality time with my family, especially my two young girls.

Josephine says it also means the family can go out “sometimes” and start saving.

However, the living wage is only the first step. Fair pay agreements will also help improve conditions for workers like Josephine in the cleaning industry.

“It will stop the race to the bottom and force the rest of cleaners across New Zealand to be on living wage like me. It will also mean better health and safety for us cleaners,” she says.

“Upskilling and training is very important to us in order to have a better life, and we do that for the next generation of workers as well.”

E tū Transformation Campaigns Director Mat Danaher says decent wages are an important part of getting a truly decent job.

“There’s no doubt that wages are one of the biggest concerns people have when thinking about the need to improve things at work,” says Mat.

“Paying at least the living wage is an important part of the picture. However, that’s not the whole story. Workers also need good health and safety, access to training and career progression, job security, real input into workplace decision-making, and more. .

“That’s why E tū is a strong supporter of fair pay agreements – it’s about looking at wages and conditions in all areas and making sure that workers have fair participation in all areas. parts of their employment agreements.”

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Michael A. Bynum