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Usdaw's young workers week focuses on 'time for better pay'

Date: 11 March 2019 Shopworkers’ trade union Usdaw today launches their young workers week, focussing on the union’s ‘time for better pay’ campaign and Government petition. Young Usdaw activists are leading 50 events across the UK, where they will engage with fellow young workers in a campaign to tackle low pay and job insecurity.
Usdaw’s survey of 2,000 workers under the age of 27 showed that:
  • Over the past five years, 44% of young workers have seen no improvement in their financial situation.
  • Over the past 12 months, 85% of young workers have had to borrow money to pay everyday bills.
  • Young workers are 50% more likely to rely on insecure hours than their older colleagues.
  • 72% of young workers believe that financial worries are having an impact on their mental health.
Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “Going to work should mean a decent standard of living for all young workers. Usdaw rejects the view that retail work is just a ‘stop gap’ for young people and is campaigning to ensure that young workers are treated properly.

“Under 27s are more likely to be working hours that are not guaranteed in their contract and therefore need protection against insecure work. They are also more likely to be paid less than older colleagues.

“Usdaw has campaigned for years to abolish youth rates. As a result of our hard work, youth rates no longer exist in companies like Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Co-op and Morrisons. Usdaw is now campaigning for a national minimum wage of £10 per hour for all ages and also calling on the Government to tackle insecure employment contracts.”

Usdaw’s ‘time for better pay’ campaign is calling for:
  • Young workers to be paid the full adult rate.
  • At least £10 per hour minimum wage rate.
  • Tackling zero and short hours contracts through a statutory minimum contract of 16 hours per week, for those who want it.
  • A statutory right to an employment contract that reflects an individual’s normal hours of work.
Usdaw’s ‘time for better pay’ petition: www.usdaw.org.uk/T4BP

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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