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National's starting wage tired rehashing of debunked policy

National's 'starting wage' a tired rehashing of debunked and ancient policy

Young Labour is outraged by the National government's proposal to reinstate a 'youth rate', cutting the minimum wage for 16-19 year olds to $10.80 an hour, and says the move will do nothing to create jobs or spur growth.

The Young Labour representative for affiliated unions Lydia McKinnon says the proposed lower 'starting wage' for young workers is discriminatory. “Paying someone less for doing the same work just because of their age is discrimination, it’s as simple as that,” Ms McKinnon says.

“There is no credible evidence that suggests cutting the minimum wage will create jobs; National's tired ideology was debunked decades ago. Under Labour the Youth Minimum wage was continually raised and then abolished. All this time youth unemployment dropped,” she says.

"If they're serious about 'helping young and inexperienced workers', National should consider policies like paying employers to take on apprentices, raising the minimum wage and fostering innovation through research and development tax breaks" Young Labour Spokesperson Ben Ross said. “If National really want to address youth unemployment they need to show us they have a plan to create jobs.”

"Cutting the minimum wage for young workers will do nothing to create jobs or boost the economy, that's macroeconomics 101. I don't know any young person who would say that throwing them in the bargain bin is a good approach to economic growth" Ross said in response to today's announcement.

"John Key and Kate Wilkinson have decided that 16 year olds are too young to vote, but not too young to have their wages slashed if they are lucky enough to find a part-time job. The Minister's claims that this will create 'youth jobs' gives it all away: Kate Wilkinson has no plans for job creation, so she'll pit young workers against old ones instead."


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