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Bradford boosted by business backing

27 February 2006

Bradford boosted by business backing

"The overwhelming support of Wellington businesses for an increase to the minimum wage and an end to youth rates has given a great boost to the campaign," Green Party Industrial Relations Spokesperson Sue Bradford says.

The February 2006 Sherwin Chan & Walshe poll published in the Dominion Post this morning showed that 69 percent of businesses support a lift in the minimum wage to $12.00 in the next three years, and 85 percent say that the elimination of the youth wage will have no significant effect on their business.

"It is very heartening to see that so many Wellington businesses are relaxed and even supportive of these proposals to eliminate poverty wages. They understand that lifting wages at the bottom in fact helps the local economy, putting more spending power into the pockets of those on the lowest incomes.

"The results of this survey also make me question the extent to which Business New Zealand Chief Executive Phil O'Reilly, who continues to maintain that changes to the minimum wage will be bad for business, speaks for the business community and employers.

"I hope this survey will help put an end to the myth that increasing the minimum wage and eliminating the lower minimum rate for young people is bad for business," Ms Bradford says.

Ms Bradford's Minimum Wage (Abolition of Age Discrimination) Amendment Bill passed through its first reading in Parliament last week, and the public will be invited to make submissions through the Transport and Industrial Relations Select Committee shortly.

ENDS

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