Minimum wage hike edges towards £6 per hour

The coalition government has accepted the recommendations of the Low Pay Commission (LPC) to raise the adult national minimum wage (NMW) rate from £5.80 to £5.93 per hour from October 2010. A new apprentice rate will also be introduced.

The coalition government has accepted the recommendations of the Low Pay Commission (LPC) to raise the adult national minimum wage (NMW) rate from £5.80 to £5.93 per hour from October 2010. A new apprentice rate will also be introduced.
Workers aged 18 to 20 years old will see their pay rise from £4.83 to £4.92 per hour whilst the 16–17 year old rate will rise from £3.57 to £3.64 per hour from October 2010.
For the first time, apprentices will also be given the minimum wage. Currently, apprentices who are aged under 19 or those in the first year of their apprenticeship are currently exempt from the NMW. Legislation requires apprentices in England to be paid at least £95 per week under the Government’s contractual minimum funding guarantee but this is not robustly enforced and the guarantee does not apply to Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.
 
The government has now agreed to the LPC’s recommendation to pay all those working as apprentices and under the age of 19 and those aged 19 and over in the first 12 months of their apprenticeship. The wage should cover both those employed on traditional contracts of apprenticeship and employed apprentices on government-supported Level 2 and 3 schemes. The apprentice wage is set at a rate of £2.50 per hour and will be effective from October 2010.
Welcoming the news, Trades Union Congress general secretary Brendan Barber said: “We welcome the new Government’s decision to confirm the recommendations of the Low Pay Commission.
“The minimum wage has been a great success, and if this announcement means that this is an area that will see continuity rather than change it will win wide support.”
The Low Pay Commission estimates that some 970,000 people stand to benefit from the increases.





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