all $15 hr Campaign for a Living Wage

Occupy Aotearoa, Occupy Everywhere

The Occupy Wall Street protest has inspired action for more than 1,000 of similar events in the US and around the World. Many occupations are began on Saturday October 15.

In Aotearoa New Zealand protests and occupations took place not just in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin, but even in New Plymouth and Invercargill!

Game On! Skycity lead way for $15 minimum

SkyCity negotions begin SkyCity employees have started negotiations over a new Collective Agreement. A central claim is for a $15 an hour minimum wage with proportionate increases for all staff. To meet this demand wage rates would need to increase by 6-7%.

$15 and hour - not 15% GST

JB Hi-Fi workers are combining a protest over low wages with opposition to the GST rise this Friday.

Unite Campaigns Organiser Joe Carolan said that while "Taxes that hit low paid workers hardest are going up, for the last three years JB Hi-Fi workers have had no pay increases whatsoever. We need a Living Wage, not new taxes on the working poor. Thats why we say $15ph, not 15% GST.

“Our Delegates representing several JB stores throughout Auckland will be striking from 1pm tomorrow Friday, and picketing JB Hi-Fi HQ opposite St Lukes Mall at 2pm.

“We say abolish GST, and replace it with a ‘Robin Hood tax’ on big financial transactions like the ones JB Hi-Fi's management make every day.

Crash National's Party! Our rights at work under attack

Crash national's partyEarly on Sunday morning as most New Zealanders are just waking up, Prime Minister John Key will be announcing sweeping changes to employment relations laws during the National Party conference at the Sky City convention centre.

Documents leaked on Thursday revealed that Key will announce:

- the 90 day "no rights" trial period that presently applies to new workers in small businesses is going to be applied to all businesses, and

- the right of union members to see a union organiser in their workplace is going to be restricted so the organiser can only be there if the employer agrees.

25 cents on minimum wage a bad April Fools Joke

25 centsLow paid workers are set to protest tomorrow in Auckland’s Queen street against a “April Fool’s Joke” - 25 cents increase on the minimum wage.

The Living Wage Campaign will gather outside JB Hi Fi’s flagship store today (Thursday 1st April) at 4pm in Queen St. JB Hi Fi is one of the companies currently offering their Unite members a zero percent pay rise.

The 25 cent an hour increase in the minimum wage from April 1 has been called an April Fool’s joke on low paid New Zealanders by the Unite Union campaigns coordinator Joe Carolan.

Pasifika support for petition overwhelming

At the Pasifika and Polyfest festivals the support for the $15 campaign for a living wage was huge. Despite having stalls and volunteers at every entrance petition gatherers were often overwhelmed by people lining up to sign.

Bringing back youth rates won’t create jobs

By Mike Treen
National Director, Unite Union

End Youth RatesRoger Douglas has had his bill to reintroduce youth rates drawn for discussion in Parliament. National voted against the effective abolition of youth rates when in opposition. Both claim the abolition of youth rates has lead to higher unemployment for young people. The assertions are not based on fact.

For decades the right wing economists have argued that any increase in the minimum wage will lead to an increase in unemployment. The ACT party is actually opposed to any minimum wage. They use economic models that don’t exist in the real world to justify their claims.

Minimum wage: truth and lies

The Prime Minister admitted he could not live on the minimum wage at the Big Gay Out yesterday.

He also claimed that increasing the minimum wage to $15 would lead to another 8000 people losing their jobs.

His Minister of Labour Kate Wilkinson supported the claim that the removal of youth rates has lead to an increase in youth unemployment.

The only claim that is true in these recent statements is that John Key couldn’t live on the minimum wage – because no one can. John Key is so rich that he doesn’t claim his official salary and allowances of $565,000 a year. But it is useful to see how the tax changes he has signalled would affect official his income of $10,865 a week or $271.60 an hour for a 40 hour week.

Government MPs challenged across the country

No love for the workersOn the day before Valentines campaigners across the country delivered the message to to National MPs - they have no love for workers and we need $15 an hour minimum wage not an increase in GST to 15%.

Protests were held in Whangarei, Auckland Central, Waitakare, Hamilton, Whanganui, Palmerston North, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch and Dunedin.

On Sunday John Key was confronted at the Big Gay Out about the impact of tax changes and the pitiful minimum wage increase on low paid workers.

Media Coverage

National has No Love For Workers this Valentines Day

Press release: Campaign for a Living Wage, Unite Union

Nationwide protests and pickets will target National MPs offices this Saturday, as anger spreads across the country at GST increases and a low minimum wage. The wave of action has been called by the Campaign for a Living Wage, which has gathered nearly 100,000 signatures supporting a Citizens Inititaed Referendum to raise the minimum wage now to $15 per hour, a move supported by over 61% of Kiwis, according to polls.

"The working poor are not stupid, and if the Government continue to attack us, National Mps shouldn't be surprised they'll be targeted for public shaming and ridicule in their local communities" said Campaign Organiser Joe Carolan.

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