Kelly Makiha is a senior reporter at the Rotorua Daily Post

Editorial: Fast food pay rates palatable

The decision of some fast-food outlets not to use controversial youth pay rates for young employees should be applauded.

It's my view the youth rates are unnecessary and undermine the work young people do while, at the same time, prevent adults from getting jobs.

McDonald's, KFC, Starbucks and Pizza Hutt have said they will not use the new youth rates and other big firms are being encouraged to follow their lead.

The new legislation allows employers to pay 80 per cent of the minimum wage to those aged 19 and under. The new law sees young staff paid $10.80 an hour for three months.

The food outlets had the chance to increase their profit margins but, instead, decided to do what is right. I have nothing against young people having jobs, but the market is tight and there are adults who have mouths to feed and bills to pay.

If an employer had an option of paying a school student less or an adult slightly more, chances are they will take the cheaper option. Young people only need the job for pocket money while they are at school or studying, while for adults it could be a case of survival.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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