Unite, Britain's biggest union, says Tory minister Matthew Hancock's claims that the minimum wage should be strengthened rings hollow as his party won't put the money where its mouth is.
The minister gave a speech to the Resolution Foundation today (27 March) to support tackling low pay, while his party, the Tories, have frozen public sector workers' pay for two years and is doing nothing to raise the living standards of the poorest.
Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said:
"It's all very well for Matthew Hancock to say he wants to see the national minimum wage strengthened, but unless his words are backed up by action they're meaningless.
"His party has created an insecure workforce in a low waged nation. The Tories have frozen the pay of public sector workers for two years and now they are following it up with a paltry one per cent increase which is a pay cut in real terms.
"Increasing the minimum wage by £1 would put an extra £25 a week into people's pockets, which would then get people spending on our high streets. Instead, in just a few days time millionaires will get a £40,000 tax cut which will lie idle doing nothing to help the economy get moving.
"With 80 per cent of the cuts still to come, the situation is becoming critical. Instead of boosting the economy and shaving billions off the benefits bill, the only growth the country is seeing is a growth in food banks."
Contact: Ciaran Naidoo on 07768 931 315
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.5 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.