Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Communist Party of Malta supports the minimum income standard

The Communist Party of Malta supports the call by the United Left Bloc in the European Parliament for a decent minimum income standard to combat rising poverty across Europe. In Malta the introduction of a minimum income by law was introduced way back in the 1970s by a Labour Administration. This labour legislation introduced for the first time social justice at the workplace.

“It is offensive that the Government has, in Budget 2011, tied an increase in minimum wage with job training, when training is supposed to be a worker’s right. This is nothing but discrimination to workers with low income and this will increase social exclusion and class inequalities”.

“The proposed Framework Directive for a minimum income standard is mathematically formulated based on at least 60% of the median income in each European country. This measure will be of a benefit to workers on a minimum wage to enjoy a decent life. This will also be an effective tool to fight social exclusion, poverty and unemployment”.

The concept of a minimum income standard is on the same basis of that of the living wage but differs in methodology as the living wage is based on the whims of the employers and the type of Government, while the minimum income standard is directly linked with the minimum wage income and is mandatory by law.

"Euro statistic figures show that even after social reforms, some 85 million people will remain at risk of poverty in the EU. Neo liberal policies, such as cuts in social expenditure and jobs, austerity measures, and low wages are putting families at risk of poverty”.

The Communist Party of Malta supports the call from the streets by the workers across Europe, mainly in Greece, Spain and France who are demanding a change in policy to tackle poverty and social exclusion.

We urge the Maltese Members of European Parliament to support this European framework directive for the introduction of a minimum income standard based on a 60% on the median income.

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