The National Minimum Wage is due to rise at the beginning of next month, causing mixed reactions about the implementation of the rise and the rates put forward by the Low Pay Commission (LPC).
For adults, the minimum wage is set to increase by 15p to £6.08 an hour, a 2.5% rise. 18-20 year olds will see a 6p rise in the minimum wage to £4.98, while 16-17 will earn no less than £3.68 an hour — an increase of 4p. The minimum wage for apprentices will also be rising, by 10p to £2.60 an hour.
Business Secretary Vince Cable has said: “More than 890,000 of Britain’s lowest paid workers will gain from these changes. They are appropriate — reflecting the current economic uncertainty while at the same time protecting the UK’s lowest paid workers and the challenges faced by businesses.”
On the other hand, the director general of the British Retail Consortium shows concerns, saying: “At a time when the priority should be getting more people into work, any increase in staff costs is an extra hurdle. This rise in the National Minimum Wage is at the very top end of what retailers could be expected to live with.”
Last week, Low Pay Commissioners visited London to carry out fact-finding research on the National Minimum Wage, gathering primary information about the operations of the scheme.
LPC Professor Bob Elliot comments: “Hearing directly from those affected by the National Minimum Wage is an important part of the Commission’s work and informs our recommendations to the Government. Our visits take us around the UK and we welcome the opportunity to heart how the Minimum Wage has affected people in London.”