Workers toiling for a pittance not fair
ALL of us toil for our daily bread and butter and expect to be rewarded in accordance with the hard work we put in. However, deciding the basic minimum wage for the workers is not an easy task, because the basic wage and allowances largely depend on multiple criteria such as the job title, educational qualification, skill level and experience of the worker. Further it depends on the principle of demand-supply matrix and the nationality of the worker.
Bahrain attracts workforce from many countries of the world and the basic wage of the workers can be as low as BD80 per month. Before deciding the basic minimum wage for workers, one has to take into consideration other benefits such as accommodation, transport and health insurance.
If these other allowances are satisfactory to workers, the next question is about the saving potential of the wages after deducting for the food.
Just because there is a desperate workforce available ready to work for low wages, it is not fair to make them toil for a pittance.
Unless there is a fixed basic minimum wage for specific jobs, it is hard to prevent the exploitation of the workers which would widen the gap between the rich and the poor.
Therefore, basic minimum wage should take into account the sustainability of the workers and their saving potential, apart from market trends, perceived notions of decent salary and the profile of the worker.
Another factor which should influence this decision-making is the affordability of the employer. The rising cost of living should also be taken into consideration.
Workers are the backbone of every business. They also have a family to care for. Hence, basic minimum wage would go a long way in ensuring socially equitable society.