As Saint Lucia’s Minimum Wage Commission reports ‘significant progress’ in arriving at a national minimum wage for workers, Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre has explained that an increase would benefit everyone.
“When there is an increase in wages everybody benefits. The people who get these wages because most likely when the wages are increased for people at the lower incomes, they spend more,” Pierre told reporters.
In addition, he said their quality of life would improve.
“We hope that we can get a joint agreement – everyone can agree so we can have a wage that will not be a disincentive to investment but will improve the quality of life of the people of Saint Lucia and lead to wealth creation,” Pierre stated.
He spoke of the need to start at the basics and provide people with a liveable wage.
The Chairperson of the Minimum Wage Commission, veteran trade unionist Lawrence Poyotte recently disclosed that the body has been meeting since September 2022, on an average of twice a month.
He confirmed that the Commission was using a scientific method to arrive at the proposed minimum wage.
“We want to have a minimum liveable wage,” Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre told reporters on the sidelines of a Cabinet meeting Monday.
“The legislation speaks to a minimum wage but we think that we must speak about a minimum liveable wage,” Pierre explained.
He said he understood that the Commission is reviewing its report, which will go before Cabinet ‘very shortly’ for a decision.
“We are involving all stakeholders. It’s not a matter of the government only or the unions. Everybody is involved in that discussion,” the Prime Minister told reporters.
Headline photo: Stock image.