Tag Archives: labor

Return to Oz: In Australia, $7.75 an hour is for children

Return to Oz

In Australia, $7.75 an hour is for children

 

© Bryan Zepp Jamieson

February 26th 2013

 

About 18 months ago, I wrote about Australia’s minimum wage laws, and with Congress poised to reject out of hand a presidential suggestion that the minimum wage should be raised to $9 an hour in the world’s richest country, it’s time to revisit Australia.

I wrote at the time, “Australia passed the Fair Work Act of 2009, which took effect in the form of the National Employment Standards on January 1, 2010. The act covers roughly 2/3rds of Australia’s workers (about 27% of the workforce are deemed “casual workers” defined by a tautology; they are called casual workers because they are paid as casual workers). Some of the provisions are, by American standards, utterly amazing.”

The minimum wage was $569.90 per week, then. Now it’s $606.40, based on a 38 hour work week, or $15.96 an hour. “Casual employees” (part timers) get a minimum of $21.66 an hour, which encourages employers to hire full-time workers and save money.

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Aside

The Business of America …is not business. It’s being a society. © Bryan Zepp Jamieson October 20th, 2012 A favorite stance by Republicans and libertarians, especially this time of year when voter registrations are being trashed by Republican party operatives … Continue reading

Labor Day 2011

America isn’t working

September 3rd 2011

The labor situation in America this Labor Day weekend? Rotten. Dire. Devastating. Grim. Or, in economic terms, “less than optimal.”

The top problem, of course, is unemployment. The U3, the standard measure the Bureau of Labor Statistics uses to measure unemployment, stands at 9.1%. However, the twelve million people in that bleak number are only part of the tale. The U6, which includes “discouraged workers” and people who got moved from full-time jobs to positions paying less than 33 hours a week, stands at 18.9%.

There are two million or so for whom the 99 week extension on Unemployment Benefits have run out, and so are no longer even considered part of the labor force. Then there are the twelve million unemployables who aren’t disabled but are unable to get work because of criminal records, disfigurements or lack of education. And of course, the three million or so who are in the American gulags at any given time.

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The Wizards of Oz

Down under, they know how to work people!

June 11th 2011

 As American labor drifts slowly into outright servitude, Australia is trying something different, and it seems to be working.

Australia passed the Fair Work Act of 2009, which took effect in the form of the National Employment Standards on January 1, 2010. The act covers roughly 2/3rds of Australia’s workers (about 27% of the workforce are deemed “casual workers” defined by a tautology; they are called casual workers because they are paid as casual workers). Some of the provisions are, by American standards, utterly amazing.

The minimum wage is $569.90 per week. (In Australian dollars, which are presently a bit over $1.05 in US dollars, so that wage is $600.56). A work week is defined as being 38 hours, and for part timers, the minimum wage is $15 an hour. It’s higher for temps.

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