by Mel Martin

It’s April 1st, which means today is the day both of NZ’s minimum wage rates go for another historic increase.

The Starting Out Wage for people 16-17 in their first six months of work will increase to $15.12, which is worked out at 80% of the adult rate. And the Adult Minimum Wage for anyone over 18, and not enrolled in an NZ Apprenticeship increases to $18.90.

Despite some noise around delaying the increase by six months, the wage increase will go ahead as planned, and as of today all employers must adhere to the new rates.

While it is indeed tricky times, we have all been immediately impacted by the effects of COVID-19.

The people working in our supermarkets, service stations, pharmacies, retail outlets, and delivery services are amongst some of the youngest and most vulnerable workers in the country. Alongside that, they are some of the country’s lowest waged.

The increase has been a long time coming, and will make a big difference in the lives of hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders working on the frontline not only during this time of pandemic, but thanklessly every single day.

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