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MKs throw support behind bill to raise minimum wage to NIS 30 per hour
By Lidar Gravé-Lazi
15/05/2014
61 MKs across the political spectrum sign on to support bill; Israel currently has the lowest minimum wage in the Western world, at 23.12 shekels per hour.
 
MK Dov Henin (Hadash) scored a victory this week as 61 MKs from across the political spectrum signed on to his bill to raise the minimum wage in Israel to NIS 30 per hour.

“The broad bipartisan support for the bill to raise the minimum wage to NIS 30 per hour indicates that the strong voices heard in public in the past month also reached the members of Knesset,” Henin said.

“There is no reason that in Israel so many workers will remain below the poverty line,” he continued. “There is no justification that people work hard from morning to evening and cannot support their families with dignity.”

Henin, along with Koach LaOvdim–Democratic Worker’s organization, initiated the call to raise the minimum wage from the current NIS 23.12 last month, citing that Israel had the lowest wages in the Western world.

“In the US, President [Barack] Obama is leading a campaign to raise the minimum wage to $10, while in many countries a campaign is underway to raise the minimum wage to at least $15.

Next week in Switzerland a referendum on raising the minimum wage to $25 will take place,” Henin said.

On May 1, International Worker’s Day, Henin marched in Tel Aviv along with over a thousand protesters and called on the government to raise the minimum wage. He has also initiated a social media campaign to promote awareness for the cause, receiving thousands of shares and likes.

“Since I published this demand last month following the formation with Koach LaOvdim, every day I receive a lot of requests from people everywhere – on the bus, at the beach, from the employees of the Knesset, guards at government and municipal offices, media production staff, and from the masses of contract workers in the public and private sectors,” he said.

MKs have also participated in the awareness campaign, posting photographs of themselves holding a sign calling to raise the minimum wage to NIS 30 on social media sites.

Among the MKs who have pledged support to the campaign are opposition leader Isaac Herzog (Labor), Eitan Cabel (Labor), Michal Rozin (Meretz), Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism), Arye Deri (Shas), Shaul Mofaz (Kadima) and Miri Regev (Likud).
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