The Herald reports:
About 55,000 low-paid workers, mainly women, are about to get one of the biggest pay rises ever after details of a historic pay equity settlement are revealed today.
The deal will cost the Government over $500 million a year when fully implemented in five years, assuming it is signed off by union members and the Cabinet.
That is a lot of money. It is around a third of the annual operating allowance for new spending in any one year.
The settlement will mean hefty pay increases from July in three government-funded service sectors that employ mainly women on low rates: aged residential care, home support, and disability services.
The Herald understands that for the primary litigant, rest home caregiver Kristine Bartlett, it will mean an increase from about $16 an hour to about $23 an hour – more than 43 per cent.
The deal allows for annual increases over five years to $27 an hour.
Overall, pay rises will range from $3 an hour to $7, depending on the work and experience.
Labour and Greens have pledged to keep crown spending to under 30% of GDP. This extra $500 million a year in spending will mean they have $500 million a year less for their promises.