ADPD: parties fail to address minimum wage, tell low-wage earners to work longer

Green Party ADPD says neither government Budget nor PN proposals address low minimum wage, which fails to ensure a decent living

(File Photo)
(File Photo)

ADPD the Green Party said that both the Labour and Nationalist parties have failed to propose measures that better quality of life, and instead only ask low-wage earners to work longer hours to make a decent living.

Mina Tolu, ADPD International Secretary and candidate, said in a press conference that the Budget had failed to address the minimum wage, which according to her fails to ensure a decent living.

“Why should one be grateful that overtime is going to be less taxed when for a lot of workers this is a necessity? This leads many to have a lower quality of life and burnout. We should be considering how to reduce the 40-hour work week without a decrease in conditions of work and income,” Tolu said.

She criticised the budget measure that proposes the establishment of ‘templates’ for employment contracts and said that this does not address the exploitation in the construction industry.

Tolu suggested for a register of these contracts. “In spite of all the promises, PLPN believe in maintaining low wages so that the Government’s benevolence is shown from time to time towards those whom it pleases to carry favour with,” Tolu said.

The Green Party chairperson Carmel Cacopardo argued that the Budget had been based on assumptions of economic growth, despite what he called uncertainty over the recovery from the pandemic. Cacopardo stressed that projects like the proposed metro, that would have a massive impact on the country’s finances, were not mentioned in the Budget speech.

He said that the Opposition was on the other hand promising a free-for-all, to surpass the government's Budget measures.

Cacopardo also said that the taxation system favoured multinational corporations. “There is no discussion about the taxation system, even in light of the new international 15% minimum tax rate on multinationals, instead of the shameful special PLPN-supported 5% rate for the super-rich. In contrast while billionaire multinationals pay 5%, local SMEs pay 35% in tax.”

He added that environmental measures in the Budget were just a “smokescreen when one considers the damage that has been incurred within this sector over the past years”.

“It will only be Parliamentary Representatives elected from the ADPD candidates’ list that will insist on a decent minimum wage and ensure that each measure proposed is sustainable,” concluded Cacopardo.