Labor recommends pay rise for low-wage workers

A 5.1 per cent increase to the hourly minimum wage would make it $21.36 (Bigstock)

The Albanese Government has officially backed a pay increase of at least 5.1 per cent for low-paid workers in a formal submission made to the nation’s wage authority. Source: ABC News.

The Fair Work Commission will rule this month on a wage rise for the nation’s lowest-paid workers.

Employment and Workplace Relations Minister Tony Burke said the new government had taken its first step on Friday to end the previous government’s “deliberate” policy of low wages.

In the final weeks of the election campaign, the now-Prime Minister Anthony Albanese seized on cost-of-living concerns to promise a Labor government would back a substantial lift in the minimum wage.

Mr Albanese said the lift should be no less than the inflation rate, which was running at 5.1 per cent. It would amount to a $1 increase to the hourly minimum wage, putting it at $21.36. The decision on whether to lift wages and by how much ultimately rests with the independent FWC.

Mr Burke said the formal submission explicitly recommended a pay increase in line with inflation.

“The submission says this: ‘In considering its decision on wages for this year, the Government recommends that the Fair Work Commission ensures that the real wages of Australia’s low paid workers do not go backwards,’” Mr Burke said.

“We don’t want anyone to go backwards ... but this is at its most acute for low wage earners.

“It’s now in the hands of the Fair Work Commission as to how they handle that.”

FULL STORY

Labor formally submits for minimum pay rise of at least 5.1 per cent to Fair Work Commission (By Jake Evans, ABC News)

Labor recommends wage rise for more than 1.3 million Australians (Angus Thompson, The Age)

RELATED COVERAGE

Federal government backs increase to minimum wage in submission to Fair Work Commission (SBS News

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