American Samoa Minimum Wage Raise Welcome

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Ongoing concerns about employment security

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, October 5, 2015) – Employees at American Samoa's largest tuna cannery say they are happy their wages have increased, but have reservations about their job security.

A federally mandated increase in the territory's minimum wage has come into force following a three year wage freeze, despite opposition from the business sector and some in government.

The latest wage hike is a compromise, with the Senate passing a 40 cent rise to be in effect for three years, instead of the proposed 50 cent rise.

An employee at StarKist Samoa, Line Tauatama, has welcomed the increase.

"We don't have enough to support our families and put our kids to school, bread on the table and all that. So for us labour workers, I know it's not that much, but it can help us."

However, Line Tautama says he is concerned about the effect the wage rise might have on job security at the cannery.

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