by Tim Lezard Unions have welcome Labour’s plans to increase the National Minimum Wage to £8 an hour by 2020. Leader Ed Milband announced the move yesterday, saying the rise of £1.50 an hour would be worth £60 a week or £3,000 a year for Britain’s lowe …

Tim Lezard Europe, UK, UK unions, Unison,

Labourby Tim Lezard

Unions have welcome Labour’s plans to increase the National Minimum Wage to £8 an hour by 2020.

Leader Ed Milband announced the move yesterday, saying the rise of £1.50 an hour would be worth £60 a week or £3,000 a year for Britain’s lowest-paid workers.

GMB general secretary Paul Kenny said ” This is a welcome and necessary first step for workers to recover the nearly 15% drop in the value of earnings they suffered over the last six years.

It is important to shift the burden of dealing with low pay from taxpayers to the employers many of whom are sitting on record levels of cash and profits. The transition must be real so that the increase is not paid with one hand and taken away with the other.”

UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said: “This is welcome news. Hundreds of thousands of public sector workers are on the minimum wage and many have to rely on state benefits, beg at foodbanks or fall prey to payday loan sharks to make ends meet. And that is a disgrace in the 21st century.

“Paying a fair wage also gives workers dignity and is good for the economy. Raising the minimum wage to a higher percentage of median earnings will help towards that. And it sends out a powerful message to all employers, public and private, that poverty pay won’t be tolerated”.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
Author avatar

Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

Read All Articles