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Moral And Legal Duty To Abolish Youth Rates

Government Has Moral And Legal Duty To Abolish Youth Rates

04 May 2006

"Government has a moral duty to act now to eliminate discrimination against young people and remove youth rates," said David Hanna, President of the New Zealand Association of Adolescent Health and Development (NZAAHD).

This call follows Ministry of Justice advice on Sue Bradford's youth rates member's bill that raises questions over the legality of government allowing for discrimination against 16 and 17 year old workers in the form of youth rates.

"The Human Rights Act prohibits age-based discrimination, but the government sanctions discrimination against young people through the current minimum wage legislation," said David Hanna.

"We believe the government should tidy this up and make it clear that young workers should not be paid inferior rates than their older workmates, when they are doing the same work."

"The research on which the Youth Development Strategy Aotearoa is based shows that healthy development occurs when young people make a contribution to society which is valued," said David Hanna.

"Paying 16 and 17 year olds less simply because of their age devalues the contribution they make" "We urge government and members of the select committee considering the youth rates bill to take the Ministry of Justice advice into account, and to act now to end discrimination against young workers," said David Hanna


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