Saturday, July 24, 2021
Times of Georgia
HomePoliticalRevealed: Porirua City Council’s ‘Living Wage’ Hike Trickles Up To Higher Paid...

Revealed: Porirua City Council’s ‘Living Wage’ Hike Trickles Up To Higher Paid Staff



The New Zealand Taxpayers’
Union
can
reveal
that Porirua City Council’s
introduction of a ‘Living Wage’ policy resulted in 52
percent of Council staff receiving wage
hikes.

In July 2020, while 39 staff were
moved up to the living wage rate, a further 176 received
‘relativity adjustments’ in pay as a result of the
Living Wage policy – including staff already paid as much
as $30.53 per hour.

Union spokesman Louis
Houlbrooke says, “For every council worker who was bumped
up to the Living Wage, another three workers paid more also
received a pay hike.”

“The announcement of the
Living Wage policy was sold
to Porirua ratepayers
as helping out workers on the
bottom rung, just enough for them ‘to live a life of
dignity’. Now we learn that more than half of the
Council’s staff got a pay hike as a result. That is an
under-handed, self-serving way of increasing Council
pay.”

“Of course, this occurred in the immediate
wake of New Zealand’s COVID-19 lockdown, when ratepayers
and businesses were cutting back to ensure financial
survival. The pandemic should have led the Council to
reconsider its Living Wage policy – instead, it was
expanded. Ratepayers will see the clear link behind this
kind of indulgent spending and the Council’s planned eight
percent rate hike.”

“The Council is now
planning
to demand that any and all private contractors
working for the Council also pay their workers a Living
Wage. The cost of this move will likely blow out as the
Living Wage effect trickles up to higher-paid contractor
employees.”

“This should serve as a warning to all
Councils considering a Living Wage policy. The intention to
help low-paid workers may sound noble, but other staff are
likely to demand commensurate pay hikes. That cost needs to
be taken into account and communicated transparently before
any decision is made.”

The information was obtained
via an official information request and passed on to the
Union by a concerned
ratepayer.

© Scoop Media

 



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