9 December 2015
By David O’Sullivan
Cork City Councillor Mick Barry (Anti Austerity Alliance) this morning called on the trade union movement to organise a “water charges style” campaign to win a living wage for low paid workers in 2016.
As the Oireachtas Jobs Committee released a report calling for an increase in the minimum wage as a step towards a living wage, Cllr Barry said that the planned 50 cent increase in the minimum wage from January 1 did not go far enough.
“A fifty cent increase in the minimum wage isn’t enough when the rent bills have to be paid. Workers need a minimum wage of 12 euro an hour. If the Oireachtas Jobs Committee say that workers will have to wait for that then the trade union movement should take up the challenge and launch a major campaign to win a living wage for low paid workers in 2016.”
The national minimum wage is currently set at 8.65 euro an hour. It is due to rise to 9.15 euro an hour from Jan 1. Most supporters of the living wage concept say it should be set at 11.50 an hour. The Anti Austerity Alliance is campaigning for a national minimum wage of 12 euro an hour.