New national minimum wage rates come into force today, bringing a pay rise for care and other workers across the country whose vital, but low-paid, work has been highlighted in the current crisis.
“Today’s pay rise will make a real difference to over a million low-paid workers across the country,” said general secretary Dave Prentis.
“Many care staff are on the minimum wage. They’re looking after the elderly and vulnerable in the most challenging of circumstances and deserve every penny.
“All employers must ensure their staff get the legal increase.”
From 1 April, the hourly national minimum wage is:
- £8.72, up from £8.21, for workers aged 25 and above;
- £8.20, from £7.70, for workers aged 21-24;
- £6.45, from £6.15, for workers aged 18-20;
- £4.55, from £4.35, for workers aged 16-17;
- £4.15, from £3.90, for apprentices aged under 19 or in the first year of their apprenticeship.
The government rebranded the top level of the national minimum wage as the ‘living wage’ in 2016, but this should not to be confused with the real living wage, which is calculated by the Living Wage Foundation, an independent organisation that campaigns for a living wage based on the actual cost of living.
That voluntary real living wage is £10.75 an hour in London and £9.30 outside the capital.