Process needs quick resolution to achieve Living Wage for workers

15 April 2021

Labour employment spokesperson Senator Marie Sherlock has urged the Tánaiste to set actionable timelines on his process examining the Living Wage in Ireland.

Senator Sherlock said:

“Work should always pay and the Living Wage is good for workers, business, families and society. As our economy recovers from the pandemic, we need to ensure that there is decent pay for every worker. A living income ensure that workers have enough in their take home pay to enjoy a healthy and varied diet, comfortably pay their mortage or rent, go on a holiday and socialise, the normal things that many workers are currently deprived of on a minimum wage.

“Labour has consistently called for the mandate of the Low Pay Commission to change so that it would set up a pathway to a Living Wage. It’s welcome to see the Tánaiste set up a process on a pathway to a living wage, but a process in itself does not represent genuine progress. Like sick pay, like the right to disconnect, we need to see real action from the Government if their commitment to workers is to be believed. 

“We currently have far too many workers on low pay in this country, with one of the highest rates in Europe and the OECD of 23%. This is compounded by the high cost of living, particularly in Dublin, with out of control rents and the high cost of goods and services that leaves many low paid workers struggling to make ends meet.

“Full time workers in Ireland should be paid enough to have a decent standard of living, which is currently not the case. In a civilised and fair society, everyone who works should be able to make ends meet, and have some savings left over. At the very least, their physical, psychological and social needs should be met by their earned income.”

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