Tuesday, June 18, 2024

‘RAISE MINIMUM WAGE’ CAMPAIGN

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Confederation of Autonomous Trade Unions of Serbia, TUC NEZAVISNOST and Center for the Politics of Emancipation invite citizens, social movements and NGOs to support trade union demands for the minimum wage increase to the level of minimum consumer basket. Mid-August representatives of Employers’ Association, Serbian Government and trade unions will start negotiations on the minimum wage in the Social-Economic Council and the amount of next year’s minimum wage will be determined till September 15 at the latest.
Even though Labour Law stipulates that minimum wage needs be determined according to ‘existential and social needs of workers and their families expressed through the value of minimum consumer basket’, in reality minimum consumer basket reflects the consumption of 30% of the poorest groups in the society.
Taken from today’s perspective, increasing minimum wage to the level of the actual minimum consumer basket would be the first crucial step in improving workers’ living standard. That is why we demand minimum wage in 2022 to be increased by 20% and to be successively increased every year till it has reached the level enabling workers to live decently.
Minimum wage is determined according to the minimum labour cost, which is the minimum amount that an employer needs to pay per a working hour. Labour Law dictates that minimum wage shall be paid only in extraordinary circumstances not longer than 6 months. Nevertheless, minimum wage is the reality for 350,000 people. At the moment it is below the poverty line for a three-member family. It is the most drastic indicator of the degradation of living standard.
Why is minimum wage important for all of us? Raising minimum wage affects other wages, reduces inequality in the society and improves living standard of the population. Higher wages relate to bigger consumption, which generates economic activity impacting more successful business of the SMEs. Having in mind that a considerable part of our economy is in the hands of foreign companies, pay rise also means less profit drain from the country.

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