As the Government preps for next year’s budget, the YMCA has weighed in – insisting that the minimum wage should be increased to €1,000 a month, among other things, in an effort to reduce the number of homeless people in Malta.
The Chief Executive, Anthony Camilleri, stated that the association believes that the Government must also intervene in the rental market, especially after the global pandemic.
It is undeniable that COVID-19 has affected everyone, especially the homeless – a burden strongly felt by the YMCA as its two houses, Niki Cassar House and Y Communal Home, are filled to the brim. They are currently offering shelter to 36 residents.
Camilleri added that there has also been an increase in families with children knocking on YMCA doors. He explained, ‘When the pandemic started, there were people who lost their jobs, for example. The one who was working part time or working with a minimum wage, could not cope and ended up homeless’.
Put simply, the YMCA proposes that minimum wage should better reflect today’s needs. In fact, there hasn’t been an increase in minimum wage for four years now.
‘The rent for one bedroom is €700, I feel that for someone to have a decent life it should not be less than €1,000,’ added Camilleri.
Do you think it’s about time for the national minimum wage to increase?