Average wage now over £42K

JERSEY’S average earnings have risen by 3.3% to £42,640 in the past year.

Average weekly earnings by sector of the Jersey economy (31563176)
Average weekly earnings by sector of the Jersey economy (31563176)

But the rise in inflation during the last 12 months has effectively wiped out the increase.

And the amount Islanders take home has increased by just 0.5% in real terms since 2001, meaning earnings have essentially flatlined.

This year’s overall increase has been partially driven by a large rise in wages within the hospitality sector, with hotel, restaurant and bar staff seeing a more than 15% hike in the past 12 months.

However, this followed a decrease of 10% in the previous year, when hospitality staff saw earnings plummet during the lockdown.

The rise was also fuelled by wage wars breaking out this year as businesses competed for staff amid a major shortage of labour caused by Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic.

The shortage of workers in the hospitality sector has led to a number of businesses either remaining shut or scaling back their operations.

This week, Vittoria restaurant and bar in Liberty Wharf confirmed that it was unable to operate a late-night service during the first weekend after the final pandemic restrictions were lifted owing to staff shortages. The Bar, on the Waterfront, is set to remain closed for the foreseeable future.

Major chains such as McDonalds, Pizza Hut and Costa Coffee have had to reduce their opening hours, while the Chamber of Commerce has said that the hospitality industry is suffering due to recruitment issues.

Fiona Kerley, of the Jersey Hospitality Association, said that the staffing crisis was putting increased pressure on those within the industry to work overtime.

She said: ‘I think there has been a lack of understanding by the industry as to how busy the back end of the season would be. Now that most Covid restrictions have eased August has been crazy.’

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