Low paid workers value the minimum wage

Ninety-five per cent of low paid workers say a national minimum wage is very important to them and their families, according to a poll by retail union Usdaw.

Usdaw was one of the driving forces behind the creation of a minimum wage and commissioned pollsters NOP to ask union members and others earning £4.85 an hour if having a guaranteed basic level of pay made a real difference to their living standards.

“We knew that the minimum wage has revolutionised living standards for our members but even we were amazed at this overwhelming endorsement,” said Usdaw general secretary John Hannett.

“There is no doubt that our members are no longer exploited on slave wages thanks to the minimum wage and Labour’s above-inflation increases have meant retail staff have been able to boost the living standards of their families.

“It has made sure our members finally have a decent living wage and revitalised retail work as a career option, with 500,000 more people working in our stores since 1997.”

Usdaw also found that of those who expressed an opinion in the poll 68% intended to vote Labour in the General Election.


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