June 30, 2016
Living wage boosts bar takings
A Rotorua Maori business owner says paying a living wage to his staff is a way to fix a major failing in the industry.
Former television weather presenter and Labour election candidate Tamati Coffey says minimum wage is standard in the tourism hub, as it is in the hospitality, accommodation and retail sectors overall – and one of the results is high staff turnover.
Paying at least the $19.80 recommended by the living wage campaign is a way to tell workers at his establishment that they are valued, and it’s had a positive effect not just on staff but on customers.
"There’s a different feeling now at the bar if that makes any sense. When you're paying them just under 20 bucks an hour or just over, for those people that are qualified, they start feeling valued, they turn up to work with a skip in their step. The whole attitude, the whole ahua of the place has changed, that's a good thing, a really good thing," he says.
Tamati Coffey says other businesses in the city are looking at what his Ponsonby Rd Lounge Bar has done and could follow.
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