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Minimum wage of at least £12 and an end to rip-off youth rates – Usdaw gives evidence to the Low Pay Commission

Date: 14 June 2023 Retail trade union Usdaw has provided written evidence to the Low Pay Commission (LPC) on minimum wage rates. The LPC’s annual call for evidence will help shape the recommendations they will make to the Government this autumn about the new minimum wage rates, which are expected to come into force on 1 April 2024.
Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “Before the cost of living crisis, Britain desperately needed a pay rise. Now, with inflation remaining in double figures for over a year, many workers are reaching breaking point. We have provided the Low Pay Commission with evidence of why we need a new deal for workers that provides the highest possible increase to the minimum wage and more secure employment.
“We are calling on the Low Pay Commission to be ambitious with their recommendation. Workers have faced a ‘perfect storm’ of price rises across a range of essentials, including food and fuel, which impacts every household. Regardless of whether inflation starts to drop, there is no sign of the pressure on working people easing, as wages continue to lag behind inflation, dragging living standards down. Lower income households in particular are vulnerable to price changes and this should be a consideration over and above headline inflation rates.
“Usdaw’s response to the Low Pay Commission’s consultation on next year’s minimum wage rates calls for at least £12 per hour as a step towards £15 for all workers, ending rip-off youth rates. If you’re old enough to do the job, you’re old enough to be paid the rate for the job. We are also looking to the LPC to press the Government to act against one-sided flexibility, by reiterating their previous recommendation for workers to have the right to switch to a contract reflecting hours worked.”
Usdaw’s call for a New Deal for Workers includes:
  • Minimum wage of at least £12 per hour immediately, as a step towards £15 for all workers, ending rip-off youth rates.
  • Minimum contract of 16 hours per week, for everyone who wants it, that reflects normal hours worked and a ban on zero-hour contracts.
  • Better sick pay for all workers, from day one, at average earnings.
  • Protection at work, respect for shopworkers, abuse is not a part of the job.
  • Proper social security system, Universal Credit does not provide an effective safety net.
  • Job security, with day one employment rights for unfair dismissal and significant improvements to redundancy protections.
  • Fair treatment and equality for all workers, including equal pay.
  • Voice at work, stop rogue employers refusing to engage with trade unions and end ‘fire and rehire’. 
Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest trade union with over 350,000 members. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemical industry and other trades www.usdaw.org.uk
Labour’s New Deal for Workers: www.usdaw.org.uk/LaboursNDW

For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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