I am very pleased to support the TUC call for an increase in the minimum wage from £4.85 to £6 over the next two years. I worked on the minimium wage for a time in 2002. It was only £4.30, so has come a good way in those two years. A rise is an essential part of the fight against poverty.
A rise in the minimum wage may cause some unemployment but at the moment the economy is in good shape and there are 600,000 vacancies in the UK. Hopefully any unfortunate people can find new work easily and anyway the minimum wage has not caused any noticeable rise in unemployment.
The CBI claim that no rise is possible is laughable. Do you know how much the average FTSE director's pay went up by last year? A whopping 17%.
A decent minimum wage is the hallmark of a civilised society and needs to be set at a realistic level.