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Care Workers Victims of National’s Low Wage Economy

Barbara Stewart MP
Spokesperson for Health
20 February 2013

Care Workers Victims of National’s Low Wage Economy

New Zealand First is dismayed that the Government is refusing to increase the pay of thousands of residential aged care staff.

The Health Select Committee has just released a report which ignored the calls from more than 10,000 people for proper funding of the aged care sector.

Health spokesperson Barbara Stewart says New Zealand First holds serious concerns over the Government’s unfair treatment of residential aged care workers.

“As part of New Zealand First’s 2005 confidence and supply agreement with Labour we boosted funding by $580 million over the next two budgets.

“But post-2008 and National ignored the sector and failed to inflation-adjust the increase New Zealand First worked so hard to get.”

Mrs Stewart says for the Government to continue ignoring calls for care workers to get a pay increase is inexcusable given that thousands of workers are currently underpaid, and the workforce is predicted to double over the next decade.

“It is yet another example of the Government showing disregard for working New Zealanders by turning our country into a low-wage economy,” says Mrs Stewart.

ENDS

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