Start-out wage fastest way to halt rising youth unemployment

Press Release – Employers And Manufacturers Association

The starting out wage proposal announced by National leader John Key this morning at an EMA business breakfast is the only policy likely to stem the rise of youth unemployment right away, says David Lowe, Employment Services Manager for the Employers …Start-out wage fastest way to halt rising youth unemployment

The starting out wage proposal announced by National leader John Key this morning at an EMA business breakfast is the only policy likely to stem the rise of youth unemployment right away, says David Lowe, Employment Services Manager for the Employers and Manufacturers Association.

“Many people have been wringing their hands over the large and rising numbers of unemployed youth but the ideas tabled to date would take 4 to 5 years to take effect,” Mr Lowe said.

“We warned in 2006 that abolishing youth rates would end up hurting the very people needing help.

“Now nearly a third of unemployed people are under 19. “Today’s starting out wage policy would stop these numbers rising, and we can’t afford to wait around.

“The statistics show an employer with a choice between an experienced worker and an inexperienced worker will take on the experienced worker every time, and we have kept on pointing this out. “Employers will welcome the policy positions on workplace flexibility and collective bargaining too.

“With just 9% of private sector employees involved in collective agreements its not sensible for the other 91% to have to dance to their tune.

“But that’s what happens. For example, a union with two members can force an employer to set workplace and employment terms and conditions – in collaboration with their competitors.

“This is not a recipe for increasing our international competitiveness and retaining our standard of living.”

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