The Council of Trade Unions is welcoming today's announcement by Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi and Agriculture Minister Damien O'Connor that the 2000 people from the Pacific being brought to New Zealand to pick seasonal fruit, will be paid no less than the living wage of $22.10 per hour.
"This decision sets an important precedent for employers who complain of labour shortages. Employers, regardless of industry, must do their bit to raise wages and conditions to attract people to work," CTU President Richard Wagstaff said.
"We would like to see all employers in horticulture, not just those in the RSE (Recognised Seasonal Employer) scheme, step up and pay the living wage to everyone they employ."
"Paying the living wage must become the new minimum standard for all industries and especially those with labour shortages. If businesses want to employ temporary migrants, they must commit to raising wages and standards of decent work for all the people they employ," said Wagstaff.