Minimum wage lifted by three per cent

The minimum wage for adult workers has been increased by three per cent to $740.80 per week after the Fair Work Commission (FWC) handed down its Annual Wage Review for 2018/19 today.

The increase which equates to an extra $21.60 per week for adult workers on all Modern Awards, including the Graphic Arts Award, comes into effect on July 1, 2019.

The wage increases will flow into Modern Awards pay rates in the coming weeks when adjustments are finalised by the FWC.

In a message to employers, Charles Watson, Workforce Guardian general manager human resources and employment relations, says any employer who pays their employees at the minimum award rate will be required to increase pay rates by three per cent from the first full pay period on or after July 1, 2019.

He adds weekly wages within awards will be rounded to the nearest 10 cents as part of the process of applying the increase.

“The incoming increases to the Award rates of pay can be absorbed into an employee’s current rates of pay as long as the result leaves their rate of pay at least equal to the increased Award minimum rates,” Watson says.

“Award covered employees who are paid an annualised salary must ensure the employee’s annualised salary remains sufficient to absorb the increased Award-based monetary entitlements and make adjustments upward where necessary.

Watson adds, “an employer who has Award free adult employees must pay them at least the new National Minimum Wage rate from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2019. An employer with Award free junior employees must pay those employees at the appropriate percentage of the National Minimum Wage rate from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2019.”

The FWC will now issue draft determinations and orders about how this decision affects modern awards and then update the pay rates in each award.

This process usually takes a few weeks to complete with updated rates of pay expected to be available mid June.

In a separate review, after six years the Fair Work Commission is still to hand down its ruling on a case relating to the modern graphic arts award and clear up confusion over linkages between wage rates, classifications and competency standards.

As part of the review process the Fair Work Commission received submissions about the Graphic Arts, Printing and Publishing Award 2010 (Modern Graphics Award) from employer groups including the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group), Printing Industries Association of Australia (PIAA) and the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU).,graphic-arts-award-ruling-due-any-day.aspx


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