John Minto’s idea of capping the top council salary at 5 times living wage, or $191k, may or may not be unrealistic. The Mayor is at least partly right in saying the city needs to meet the market in salaries for its senior staff. But the market is not the final arbiter of what is right and wrong, And it certainly does not lead of itself to a just and decent society.
Surely a rate payer funded salary of 20 times the living wage, along with the huge number of others on very high salaries, represents a serious injustice. Don’t forget that the living wage John Minto talks about is already a much higher figure than the minimum wage which many Aucklanders are on.
The ever widening gap between rich and poor is something that those in power seem reluctant to do anything about, but it represents a serious and growing injustice in this country.The biblical principle of God’s valuing every person and caring for the poor cannot be reduced to simple salary comparisons. But the question must me asked “Is it fair for people to be earning 10, 15, or 20 times as much as others who live and work in the same community, who work the same hours, and who often struggle to even cope with basic living costs?”
Are there not people who would be willing and able to do these jobs for salaries that would be regarded by most as more reasonable?
Would it not be decent and reasonable for the people in these high salary rate-payers funded positions to at least decline their next few pay rises, which in the case of the current reported increase for Watercare’s CEO is twice what some people earn in a whole year?
If they can’t bring themselves to trim their salaries, what about raising the salaries of those at the bottom to a living wage?
It’s time for those in leadership in Auckland’s and possibly other Councils to stop this injustice.
It’s time for us to let them know that those who pay their salaries want to see the situation changed.
Feel free to have your say below, and forward this to those you think may be interested.