Won! A Living Wage at Wellington Council
On 28 June Wellington City Council (WCC) voted for an annual plan in which the council will pay all directly employed workers and those employed in council controlled organisations the New Zealand official Living Wage rate of $20.20 from 1 July. Around 60 cleaners and security guards are going to $20.20, along with the directly employed workers.
The campaign to win the Living Wage at Wellington City Council has been led by an alliance of unions, faith groups and community organisations in Wellington, which has put pressure on Council leaders to commit the Living Wage and continually held them accountable for this commitment.
Wellington City Council has committed to seeking accreditation as a Living Wage employer in this council term, which ends in October 2019. The work of the Living Wage Movement at Wellington City Council has not finished. It’s very important to keep building in numbers, leaders and effective action until the last worker is paid the current Living Wage.
Pictured above: Mayor Justin Lester cuts a celebratory cake with Victoria, a community supporter and council workers, John and Frith.
Nearly 80 Living Wage Employers!
The first Licensing Trust ever!
2017 is something to celebrate for the Living Wage accredited employer programme. Accreditation Coordinator, Diana Yukich, says: “It's heartening that more and more employers are leading the way with fair wages by becoming Living Wage Employers. As the new list of employers below shows there is a diverse range of businesses and organisations that have come on board and numbers are steadily growing.”
Wiri Licencing Trust is a community-owned trust with business interests in commercial properties and hospitality, that distributes profits to local community organisations.
Wiri Licencing Trust Chairman Alan Johnson says that the community-owned business has a broader social responsibility to the people they serve, including their staff.
“It concerned us that some of our staff weren’t able to basically lead a decent life on the wages we were paying. We didn’t think that was just,” Alan says.
“We decided to initially lift everyone’s wages to at least the Living Wage and we joined the Living Wage Movement after that. “It’s about building a business that can sustain on Living Wages, not having to reply on low wages. It’s a choice that businesses need to make about what business model they work to.”
Pictured above: Wiri Licensing Trust Board members Rangi McLean and Alan Johnson with some of the 2017 Living Wage Employers: Greenpeace, Spanish Painting, ISEA, UNITE, E tū and Opticmix.
For details, please refer to www.livingwage.org.nz