The Fair Work Commission has increased the minimum wage by 2.5 per cent, set to commence for most industries on 1 July. However, award wage increases in some COVID-affected industries, including the Australian wine industry, hospitality and tourism, have been delayed until 1 November and the retail sector until 1 September.
The increase takes the minimum wage for Australia’s lowest-paid workers to $20.33 an hour, or $772.60 a week for full-time workers.
It will mean an extra $18.80 a week for Australia’s lowest-paid full-time workers.
When he announced the decision, Fair Work Commission president Justice Iain Ross said, “There was a broad consensus in the submissions before us that the current performance of the economy has exceeded expectations and that the economic recovery is well underway.”
The Australian Hotels Association (AHA) says the decision will put pressure on hotel and hospitality businesses, and that to counter this, sState and Territory Governments must provide certainty around COVID-19 restrictions and lift capacity constraints.
AHA CEO Stephen Ferguson said for businesses to be able to afford wage increases, they need to be open and trading at capacity.
“Australia’s hotels and hospitality businesses need to have policy certainty if they are to grow, employ more workers and be able to deliver today’s wage increases,” Ferguson said.
He also said that the increase coupled with the superannuation increase means that wages will effectively rise by three percent this year.
“We must also remember that parts of Australia’s accommodation, tourism and hospitality industry continue to face significant challenges, in particular CBD hotels as well as the entertainment, meetings, conferences and events sector who continue to struggle,” he said.
“With international borders closed for the foreseeable future, it is vital that interstate travel remains open and governments around Australia look towards removing all
Wage increases for award employees in aviation, tourism, fitness and certain retail sectors will take effect on November 1, while the remaining retail workers on award conditions will get their pay rise from September 1.