CTU MEDIA RELEASE 21 November 2008
Stop being the Christmas Grinch Farmers!
The Council of Trade Unions is backing the campaign by members of the National Distribution Union for fair wages from Farmers Trading Company, following a 'Skinny Santa' parade in Auckland today by the workers.
"Leading into Christmas, most of the Farmers workers have been offered a pay increase of 20 cents an hour, or less in some cases," CTU president Helen Kelly said.
"These loyal workers at the retail chain deserve better, and we're calling on Farmers to stop being the Christmas Grinch, and come back to the negotiations with an offer that respects the worth of their workforce."
"The workers action also highlights the need for wider structural changes to our economy to lift our low wages."
"Unions recognise that these are difficult economic times but this current financial crisis is not the fault of ordinary workers."
"Unions will continue to advocate keeping up momentum on lifting real wages, and an important part of that is the minimum wage continuing to rise, to protect the incomes of the lowest paid," Helen Kelly said.