… agree on the importance of carrying out more studies of a similar nature
The social partners praised the commitment of the General Workers’ Union which conducted the study on living income with the aim of identifying and addressing the need to increase the national living income for Maltese and Gozitan families. .
In a MCESD meeting, in which this study was discussed, the social partners presented a number of recommendations that covered critical topics, including purchasing power. They emphasized the importance that workers should be considered as value and investments for the business and not as a cost.
In addition, the social partners addressed the issue of businesses exploiting foreign workers, which has implications for the labor market. The social partners are in favor of increasing employment opportunities for people with disabilities to be more financially independent.
During the discussion, the social partners agreed on the importance of carrying out more studies of a similar nature. Research like this has a vital role not only to analyze and understand Maltese society and its living standards, but also to stimulate society’s ambitions for a better quality of life and design the means to achieve it.
It was emphasized that the social partners are dedicated to collaborating on methodologies designed to improve both employment opportunities and the general quality of life, to ultimately benefit Maltese and Gozitan citizens.
Meanwhile, three researchers, Dr. Kurt Xerri, Dr. Daniel Gravino, and Dr. Joseph Gravina, who were involved in this study, gave detailed presentations to the social partners about the research. The presentation not only clarified the quantitative and qualitative aspects of the study but also provided an overview of the study methodology.
During the presentation, it was explained how the study was carried out through visits to the homes of Maltese families, which allowed one to better understand their needs. The study comprehensively covered crucial aspects of family life, including health, nutrition, housing, education, transport and leisure. A point that was explained, during the presentation, is that entertainment, rather than being considered as free time, should be considered as precious time for individuals to enrich their lives more.
The Chairman of the MCESD, the Architect David Xuereb, spoke about how these discussions continue actively during the meetings of the Low Wage Commission (LWC). The LWC is actively engaged in formulating recommendations for a review of Malta’s minimum wage by the end of the year, regularly discussing with unions, employers and the government.
The aforementioned study carried out by GWU was carried out in collaboration with the Graffitti Movement and the Alliance against Poverty. Present at the MCESD meeting was also the Parliamentary Secretary for Social Dialogue Andy Ellul.