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UK considers cut in minimum wage

(16 Posts)
ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 02-Apr-13 14:45:29

Read and it and weep and then riot

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 02-Apr-13 14:50:11

Ministers are considering freezing or even cutting the minimum wage, despite embarking on the largest contraction to date in the welfare state with the aim of making “work pay”.

The wage, paid to almost a million low paid workers at companies such as retailers and manufacturers, has never been cut since its introduction in 1999.

But Downing Street said on Tuesday morning the business department was mulling over a report from the Low Pay Commission, which recommends the wage level, and could end up reducing the rate.

“It is something we need to make sure works and continues so that it supports people,” Number 10 said. “Changes are being made to the tax and benefits system that mean a couple with two children on the minimum wage will be £340 better off per year.”

The wage, presently at £6.19 an hour, is usually set each spring and comes into force in September.

Jo Swinson, Liberal Democrat employment minister, told the Low Pay Commission in January that the government believes it should take the UK’s stagnant economy into account when setting the rate.

“The level of employment is now above its pre-recession peak, but the employment rate is below the pre-recession peak,” she said. “This means that we believe that caution is required, particularly as the minimum wage rate is now at its highest ever level relative to average earnings for adults and remains high for young people.”

The hourly rate for workers over 21 increased from £6.08 last year, but the wage for employees aged 18 to 20 was frozen at £4.98.

The minimum wage was established by the Labour government in 1999, at a rate of £3.60 an hour, and is set after negotiations with employers and unions.

Campaigners have long pressured private sector employers and government departments to pay a “living wage”, which they say would be about £7.45 an hour and £8.55 in London, where costs are higher.

Working people are already worse off under this government because prices are rising faster than wages

Chris Leslie, Labour’s shadow Treasury minister, criticised the chancellor for considering reducing the wage at the same time millionaires got a tax cut in the 50p rate of tax.

“How can George Osborne claim he wants to make work pay when the government is considering cutting or freezing the minimum wage?” Mr Leslie said.

“Working people are already worse off under this government because prices are rising faster than wages. And on top of that figures from the independent IFS show that the average family will be £891 worse off this year because of tax and benefit changes since 2010,” he added.

PeneloPeePitstop Tue 02-Apr-13 14:50:57

Thassit, our non elected government really has lost the plot...

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 02-Apr-13 14:55:00

But it's for our own good...

TheCrackFox Tue 02-Apr-13 14:56:51

They really are a bunch of cunts.

Lulabellarama Tue 02-Apr-13 14:58:10

Nobody could justify this, surely?
It would be political suicide.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 02-Apr-13 15:06:14

But would it be political suicide?

They'd probably come out with how people should work harder, and how minimum wage is crippling the country. After all, if minimum wage is cut just go and find a better paid job...

I don't think this is much worse than anything else they have done so far, and I'm sure that, yet again, they can spin it so that it is your fault for being a lazy feckless scrounger...

Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Apr-13 15:11:29

Was it an April Fools? They would only get more people claiming benefits or giving up low paid jobs as they'd be financially better off on benefits.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 02-Apr-13 15:14:28

I'm pretty sure not - story seems to have broken last night/this morning.

I wish it was ...

And remember, they are busily cutting benefits as well...

ttosca Tue 02-Apr-13 15:16:09

> Was it an April Fools? They would only get more people claiming benefits or giving up low paid jobs as they'd be financially better off on benefits.

Well, yes, exactly.

Cutting the minimum wage isn't a great way to 'make work pay'- is it?

But then all these rationalisations for cutting benefits were nothing more than a mask for a nasty attack on social security and the poor.

currentbuns Tue 02-Apr-13 20:08:16

Minimum wage will not be cut

Apparently it's not on the cards after all

DialsMavis Tue 02-Apr-13 20:09:59


NiceTabard Tue 02-Apr-13 20:11:20

If they're gonna freeze it, it amounts to the same thing.

They have already frozen it for under 21s according to the link.

the utter fuckers.

PeneloPeePitstop Tue 02-Apr-13 20:20:15

So they started on the sick and disabled, now the low paid worker...

When will people kick off? When it affects the middle classes? When they come for the pensioners?

MiniTheMinx Tue 02-Apr-13 21:13:52

What a bunch of idiots they are. Wages stagnate for 30 years, whilst productivity rises, low demand for surplus commodities, now rather than reduce prices or raise wages, these wealthy bastards switch to investing in areas which require no job creation and finally want to cut wages. Where will it end? well what do they need us for? why not just keep speculating while we all go to hell. Wholesale change is needed starting with workers forming co-operatives and taking the means of employment and production out of the hands of shareholders and fat cat bosses. Something has to be done.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 02-Apr-13 21:57:17

That article actually says:

The minimum wage will not be cut this year, senior Government sources say. [Emphasis mine]

Hardly reassuring.

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