Massive Living Wage victories!

MSD guards finally win the Living Wage

Security guards who work for the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) across the country are thrilled today to learn that they will finally be moving up to at least the Living Wage of $22.10 per hour.

The Government announced in August around 400 guards will be paid at least the Living Wage from 1 September 2020. It comes after years of campaigning for public service workers who are employed by contractors to be paid at least the Living Wage.

MSD keep Work and Income offices across the country safe and secure. They are often posted outside Work and Income offices for hours at a time, in all weather. E tū member Robert Duston says it can be a hard job, but one he enjoys.

“I like being able to help less fortunate people have a good day and feel that they’ve had a good experience. Yes, the Living Wage has taken a long time, but I’m really happy the Government has recognised we’re worth it.”

Robert says: “It’s my 50th birthday next year and earning the Living Wage for me means that I can start saving to go on a holiday and not have to worry about paying bills along the way.”

E tū members call on Government parties to honour their Living Wage promise

In the 2017 general election campaign, all three parties that make up the current Government made a commitment to “support and promote changing government procurement policies to ensure that all contracted workers, who are delivering a regular and ongoing service to the core public service, move to the Living Wage within the next term of government”.

Despite this, many workers employed by contractors that deliver government services are still on the minimum wage.

E tū members put together a video outlining why getting the Living Wage is so important for them and their families. As E tū cleaner Robert Chong-Nee says: “I work 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. I need to pay my bills. I need to spend time with my family and friends, but I can’t do that.

“I’m asking the Government to honour their Living Wage promise. Please, that’s all I’m asking.”

Auckland Council cleaners secure the Living Wage after a long campaign

After eight years of campaigning, Auckland Council cleaners have finally won the Living Wage. In July, the council voted to pass their emergency budget which means by the next council election in 2022 all our members will have moved to no less than the Living Wage, currently $22.10 per hour.

E tū has been a big part of this community campaign, and member Malia Langi is relieved and happy the Living Wage will now be a reality for her colleagues. A cleaner for six years, Malia says: “Now there’s no more worries. I feel relieved now it’s been passed – everything that we were working and campaigning for the past eight years.”

E tū members with government ministers at parliament to celebrate MSD guards winning the Living Wage