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New National Minimum Wage Takes Effect Today

KINGSTON, March 1 (JIS): The new National Minimum Wage and the Minimum Wage for Industrial Security Guards take effect today, March 1.

The new rates, which were approved in the House of Representatives on January 19, will see the minimum wage increasing from $5,600 to $6,200 per 40-hour workweek.

The Minimum Wage for Industrial Security Guards will move from $204.97 per hour for a 40-hour workweek (single-time rate) or $8,198 weekly to $221.35 per hour for a 40-hour workweek or $8,854 weekly.

For security guards, the time and a half rate will also increase to $332.03, while the double-time rate is now $442.70.

There will also be increases in laundry allowance from $37.30 per hour to $40.30 per hour; firearm premium allowance from $41.00 per hour to $44.30 per hour; while the dog handler’s premium allowance from $27.58 per hour to $29.80 per hour.

The insurance coverage payable on account of security guards, who are killed or injured in the line of duty, will also be increased from $2,000,000 to $2,500,000.

The new rates are the result of recommendations from the Minimum Wage Advisory Commission, which conducted consultations across the island.

The amount represents the minimum rates for groups of wage earners who do not have the bargaining power to negotiate for fair wages.

The Advisory Commission is comprised of representatives of the Government, Trade Unions and employers’ groups, and is mandated to review the rates annually. The National Minimum Wage was last increased in January 2014.

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