We need higher quality jobs
Although the unemployment rate in Malta is low, the discrepancy in wealth continues to grow. Facts show that, although many people are working, their jobs are simply not fulfilling basic requirements such as long term financial security, good benefits and potential to grow. What can we do to ensure that everyone in Malta has a decent job?
Employers can better the quality of the jobs that they offer to their workers by offering them training and education. Workers need opportunities to learn and develop their abilities to obtain the skills they need in a changing workplace. These opportunities should be accessible at the workplace so that employees can develop and grow on the job and do not have to leave their workplace and look for training elsewhere. We need to change the narrative to make sure that the workplace provides an ongoing learning environment.
Another priority is job security that can be achieved through conditions that ensure that no job falls within the definition of precarious work. The influx of foreign workers led contractors to offer jobs with very low wages. Some employers provide work with no benefits and with no provision made to safeguard the health and safety of the workers that they engage. Such workers should join a union and through collective bargaining they will gain representation and will also be guaranteed rights that cannot be taken away from them. The Government should also initiate reforms to eradicate precarious work.
Working hours are also posing a challenge. Some workers work overtime or do part-time work to make ends meet. This means that the worker cannot create an adequate balance between work and family life. This is why we need salaries to be increased in this country.
Voice of the Workers calls for the Government to address the job market. This is not achieved by waving a magic wand. The Government, together with all interested parties, should be creative and set up a more human economy that ensures that the workers and their families have a better future.