TUC claims CBI is stuck in ‘Groundhog Day’ over minimum wage

The
TUC has accused the CBI of being stuck in a ‘Groundhog Day’ over the National
Minimum Wage.

It
said that claims by the employers’ group that a higher minimum wage could cost
jobs were made despite evidence – published today – that employment levels have
risen every time the minimum wage has increased.

The
evidence, published ahead of the increase in the adult minimum wage to £4.85
per hour this Friday, is supported by research from Income Data Services. It
shows that employment has grown in sectors of the economy where the minimum
wage has had the most impact, and that there is room for the wage to rise to
more than £5 in 2005.

The
CBI originally opposed the minimum wage, saying that it could cost jobs. It
then agreed to increases above the growth in average earnings until a few weeks
ago, when it issued a ‘storm warning’ that businesses could not cope with
further increases.

Brendan
Barber, TUC general secretary, said: "The minimum wage is doing the
business. It helps around a million people every time it goes up, most of them
part-time women workers, and jobs have been gained, not lost.

"But
the CBI seems to be stuck in a minimum wage ‘Groundhog Day’ – every time it
increases they cry wolf on job losses."

"It’s
time they accepted that the wage works, and instead concentrated on helping the
Government and trade unions crack down on employers who are still not paying
staff the legal minimum," he said.

By Mike Berry

 

 

 

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