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Plunket's Troubles Highlight Wider Executive Pay Problem

Plunket's Troubles Highlight Wider Executive Pay Problem

Reports that senior Plunket managers are paid more than $180,000 show just how the toxic problem of excessive executive pay has spread from the corporate profit-making board-room to NGOs and the voluntary sector, Peter Malcolm, spokesperson for the income equality project Closing the Gap, said today.

"A serious driver of inequality in New Zealand is the ever-widening pay gap between executives and workers — with CEOs in New Zealand now earning 30 to 50 times more than the average wage," he said.

Adding insult to injury in Plunket's case is news of local groups fighting to regain control of money and assets built up through years of hard fund-raising.

Plunket CEO Amanda Malu defended the pay levels, telling Radio New Zealand that the organisation had to compete with the public sector and large corporates in hiring managers.

"Those comments highlight yet again the urgent need for corporate boards and the government to rein in excessive salaries, before even more damage is done to charitable organisations like Plunket," Mr. Malcolm said.

Studies show high CEO pay doesn't map neatly onto high performance, as the case of outgoing Fonterra CEO Theo Spierings shows.

"Workers tend to be paid much less than they're worth, while executives are paid much more. It's long past time to balance the scale, as Plunket is now learning the hard way," Mr. Malcolm said.

RNZ/Amanda Malu: https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/352938/plunket-responds-to-claims-of-unethical-behaviour
CEO to Worker Pay: http://www.otago.ac.nz/news/news/otago667152.html

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