TUC – minimum wage must rise to £15 an hour as soon as possible

Responding to the news that the government has accepted the recommendations of the Low Pay Commission and will increase the national minimum wage to £11.44 an hour, TUC General Secretary Paul Nowak said:

“This is badly needed and follows pressure from unions and low-pay campaigners. But with bills sky-high the minimum wage should be raised to £15 an hour as soon possible.

“And let’s not lose sight of the bigger picture. Most working people’s pay packets have fallen in real-terms for the last decade – the worst squeeze in earnings in more than 200 years.

“The Conservatives have overseen record levels of in-work poverty. And they have not lifted a finger to help low-paid workers stuck in insecure work, who are often the victims of wage theft and other abuses.

“The failure of the Tories to deliver on their promise of an employment bill will leave millions at risk of being treated like disposable labour.”

On the role of the Low Pay Commission, Paul added:

“Today’s much-needed rise to the minimum wage shows the enduring impact of having representatives of business and unions on the Low Pay Commission, which recommends the rate.

“This ensures that worker and employer interests as well as the wider economy and labour market are considered. It is a template for better policy making.”

TUC analysis shows that 1.5 million more working people are living in poverty than in 2010.