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Beth Miller Labour candidate for Corby backs Usdaw’s ‘Time for Better Pay’ campaign for at least £10 per hour and secure jobs

Date: 09 April 2019 Shopworkers’ trade union Usdaw has welcomed the backing of Beth Miller Labour candidate for Corby for the union’s ‘Time for Better Pay’ campaign. Local Labour members have expressed their deep concern about the continued growth of in-work poverty and the Conservative Government’s failure to tackle the issue.
Usdaw’s survey of over 10,000 workers about their experiences of low pay, short-hours contracts and insecure work found that:
  • Over the past five years, 92% have seen no improvement in their financial situation.
  • Over the past 12 months, 76% of low-paid workers have had to rely on unsecured borrowing to pay everyday bills.
  • 63% of people believe that financial worries are having an impact on their mental health.
Usdaw’s ‘Time For Better Pay’ campaign therefore calls for a better deal for low-paid workers including:
  • At least £10 per hour minimum wage rate.
  • Young workers being paid the full adult rate.
  • Tackling zero and short hours contracts through introducing a statutory minimum contract of 16 hours per week for workers who want it.
  • Statutory right to an employment contract which reflects an individual’s normal hours of work.
Sign Usdaw’s ‘Time for Better Pay’ petition at: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/234531
Announcing her support for the campaign, Beth Miller said: “Increasing numbers of working families are living in poverty because of squeezed pay, poor working practices such as zero and short hours contracts and cuts to in-work benefits like tax credits and Universal Credit. Low pay appears to be particularly entrenched for young workers with the discrimination of the National Minimum Wage age bandings.
“So I welcome Usdaw’s ‘Time for Better Pay’ campaign and we will be campaigning alongside the union to help deliver real changes that will tackle low pay and insecure work. We are also promoting Usdaw’s Parliamentary petition for this campaign, seeking urgent action from the Government. However, in practice we can only achieve these aims by the election of a Labour Government, because our Party is committed to delivering at least £10 per hour and tackling insecure contracts.”
Paddy Lillis - Usdaw General Secretary says: “We welcome the support of local Labour members for our ‘Time for Better Pay’ campaign and petition, which were launched to end job insecurity and help working people make ends meet. Having reached the first milestone of 10,000 signatures, we were deeply disappointed by the Government’s woefully inadequate response.
“They failed to engage with the evidence we provided and snubbed the petition. Usdaw’s research has shown that the so called ‘National Living Wage’ does not live up to its name. Our survey identified that 54% of low paid workers are regularly having to miss meals just to pay the bills. The Conservatives need to understand they have created a perfect storm of low pay, insecurity and working poverty.
“So it was clear that we have to push on for the 100,000 signatures that would provide the opportunity for the petition to be debated in the House of Commons. Our aim is to persuade MPs to back £10 an hour and more secure contracts, which would boost minimum wage workers’ full-time pay by a much needed £2,640 a year.
“Usdaw’s ‘Time for Better Pay’ campaign is calling on the Government to tackle low pay and insecure work. We need real and urgent improvements to workers’ rights to deliver an economy that works for all working people.”
Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest and the fastest growing trade union with over 420,000 members. Membership has increased by more than one-third over the last couple of decades. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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