NORTHERN MARIANAS SHOULD RAISE MINIMUM WAGE, COLLEGE RESEARCHERS RECOMMEND

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SAIPAN, Northern Mariana Islands (April 14, Radio Australia)---Researchers at the U.S. commonwealth’s foremost educational institution have called on the country's policy makers to increase the minimum wage.

Northern Marianas College academics say that at its current level of (US) $3.50, the minimum wage is too low to encourage local residents to take up vocational training to fill jobs now dominated by foreign workers.

They said many foreign workers also enjoy non-monetary benefits from employers, which may include housing, that are not provided to local people.

In addition to increasing the minimum wage, the researchers said policy makers should also consider providing other incentives to employers to hire local workers.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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