Equal Times, 17 October 2023

The unrelenting violations of trade union rights documented by the International Trade Union Confederation’s (ITUC) Global Rights Index over the past ten years have led to wages being kept pitifully low. To fix this injustice governments must respect existing trade union rights and, where necessary, strengthen them.

Most poor people in the world work, yet they do not earn enough to provide a decent standard of living for themselves or their dependents. Even before Covid-19, more than one in five workers lived in poverty (surviving on less than US$3.10 per day), with 8 per cent in extreme poverty (US$1.90 per day).

The global share of wealth that goes to wages has, in fact, been declining for years, with real wages stagnating even as employers have seen the productivity of their workers grow.

Soaring inflation has eaten further into workers’ already stagnating wages, income inequality is accelerating, and the global gender pay gap remains above 20 per cent. The first half of 2022 saw the first negative growth of global wages this century, with monthly wages falling in real terms by 0.9 per cent.

There will be no end to poverty while workers are receiving poverty wages.

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