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The Introduction of a Living Wage in Ireland

Author

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  • Aedin Doris

    (Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, Maynooth University.)

  • Donal O'Neill

    (Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, Maynooth University.)

  • Olive Sweetman

    (Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, Maynooth University.)

Abstract

In June 2022 the Irish government announced intentions to replace the existing national minimum wage with a new Living Wage (LW) set at 60% of median wages. In this paper we review the evidence on the impact of a LW on wages, employment, inequality and poverty, We then use data from the EU-SILC to examine the characteristics of workers likely to be affected by the new LW and empirically examining the potential impact of the proposed LW on wages inequality and poverty. When examining the impact on labour market outcomes we also compare the impact of the proposed LW with a number of alternative LWs. While the proposed policy will increase the wages of the most vulnerable workers, we show that the introduction of a national LW would have a relatively small effect on inequality, poverty and the gender wage gap. In keeping with previous work, this shows how policies aimed only at workers fall short of addressing concerns about poverty and inequality; addressing these issues requires more powerful public policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Aedin Doris & Donal O'Neill & Olive Sweetman, 2022. "The Introduction of a Living Wage in Ireland," Economics Department Working Paper Series n316-22.pdf, Department of Economics, National University of Ireland - Maynooth.
  • Handle: RePEc:may:mayecw:n316-22.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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