Fair pay rises needed to save our savings

Fair pay rises needed to save our savings

Working people will soon be forced to raid whatever long-term savings they have to keep up with the rapidly rising cost of living thanks to flat-lining wage growth according to federal Treasury secretary Phil Gaetjens.

Household savings are at a 10 year low at around 1 per cent of income after spending. Using these savings for everyday expenses is completely unsustainable.

Wages are going backwards in real terms for most Australian workers while the cost of everyday expenses like energy, housing and transport grow significantly faster than CPI.

In the year to June 2018:

  • Childcare increased by an average 6%
  • Housing increased by an average 3.1%
  • Electricity increased by an average 10.4%
  • Gas increased by an average 7.10%
  • Transport costs increased by an average 5.2%
  • Health costs increased by an average 3.4%
  • Education costs increased by an average 2.7%

In the six years to June federal politicians enjoyed an average annual pay increase of 5.34%, while working people’s average wages stood still or went backwards in real terms.

Quotes attributable to ACTU President Michele O’Neil:  

“People are being driven to desperation by the Morrison Government’s refusal to address the wage growth crisis.

“Kelly O’Dwyer is out of touch with working people. They are about to dig into their savings to make ends meet, and she refuses to accept that there is an issue.

“The Abbott/Tunrbull/Morrison government has actively worked against  working people trying to get fair pay rises. It has slashed penalty rates, presided over a massive drop in enterprise bargaining and backed big business at every turn.

“The government has to accept that its trickle down economic experiment has failed. Working people are in the middle of a wages crisis and its hurting the economy.

“The government has fought  against harsher penalties for wage theft and better legal rights for workers to easily claim back the money they are owed, against sector bargaining which would give working people the tools to win fair pay rises, and against working peoples right to a living wage not just a minimum wage.

“We need to change the rules for working people so that we win fair pay rises that stay ahead of the cost of living.”