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National minimum wage to rise by 5.2% starting in July

Minimum wage

National minimum wage set to increase by 5.2% beginning July 1st. Photo: pixabay.com

By ERIN MODARO

The Fair Work Commission announced on June 15 that the national minimum wage will rise by 5.2% beginning on July 1st. This amounts to a rate of $21.38 per hour or $812.60 per week, affecting more than 2.7 million Australians who receive minimum wage.

The Fair Work Commission evaluated the new minimum wage in its Annual Wage Review 2021-2022, as President Iain Ross says that in the “context of inflation” the commission is aware of the vulnerability of low paid Australians.

With inflation hitting 5.1%, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said that the wage increase “makes a difference to those who are struggling with the cost of living”.

The Prime Minister described low wage workers as “heroes who saw us through the pandemic” at a press conference addressing the new national minimum wage.

“These workers deserve more than our thanks- they deserve a pay rise, and today they’ve got it” Prime Minister Albanese said.

Unions backing wage increase, but note inflation is predicted to climb

Unions across Australia are applauding the announcement, with head of the Australian Council of Trade Unions Sally McManus calling the decision “reasonable” and “fair”.

The United Workers Union (UWU) released a statement saying the FWC’s announcement is “good news for million of workers in Australia”.

The UWU also stated that with inflation predicted to hit 7% in the future, “we could still see many workers’ real wages go backwards despite todays announcement”.

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