Tuesday, October 09, 2012

The return of youth rates

Here we go - as threatened during the election, National are planning a pay cut for young workers:

The Government is introducing a new pay rate for 16-19-year-olds of a minimum $10.80 an hour.

The new pay rate, to be called the 'starting-out wage', will not be compulsory but 40,000 teens will be eligible.

It kicks in on April 1 next year and the Government estimates it will create up to 2000 youth jobs in the first two years.

The starting-out wage will be set at 80 per cent of the adult minimum wage, which is currently $13.50 an hour.

It will apply for six months after starting with a new employer. The move was National Party policy ahead of the election last November.

Its standard National Party theology: if the economy is bad, pay and conditions must be cut, to "boost employment". Which has worked so well with the 90-day law. What it actually does is redistribute wealth, from the young and poor to the old and rich.

...unless of course young people organise against it. They were pretty successful at this in the leadup to abolition, forcing several employers (such as McDonalds and Burger King) to scrap discriminatory youth rates from their contracts. National's plan will simply see a return of such industrial action.