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National’s candidate for Pakuranga Simeon Brown says local families will benefit from a $2 billion pay equity settlement for some of the health sector’s lowest paid workers.

The wage boost over five years will deliver pay increases to 55,000 workers in aged and disability residential care, and home and community support services.

“This historic settlement will help to ensure we have a higher paid, more skilled, and better engaged workforce caring for around 110,000 of New Zealand’s most vulnerable,” Mr Brown says.

“Around 20,000 of this predominately female workforce are currently on the minimum wage of $15.75 an hour. This settlement will mean that on 1 July this year they will move to at least $19 an hour, a 21 percent pay rise.

“For a fulltime worker, this means they will be taking home around an extra $100 a week, which is over $5000 a year.

“This pay increase will also help to reduce the high turnover rate of our care and support workers across aged and disability residential care, and home and community support services.

“I’m proud to be standing in Pakuranga for a National Government that delivers real benefits for workers in our health sector.”

The $2 billion settlement over five years will be funded through an increase of $1.85 billion to the health budget and $192 million to ACC.

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