The SNP has slammed the Tories’ pledge to raise National Living Wage to £10.50 within the next five years – and lower the age threshold from 25 to 21 – as ‘nothing more than smoke and mirrors’.
SNP MPs Alison Thewliss and David Linden, who have led the four-year campaign to ensure all workers are paid a real living wage have blasted the announcement, saying it does not go far enough.
Ms Thewliss today urged UK Chancellor Sajid Javid at Treasury questions to go further and set a real living wage for all workers regardless of their age instead of this state endorsed age discrimination.
The current rate for over 25s is £8.21 – but the Living Wage Foundation says it should already be £9 across the UK and £10.55 for those in London – and today, a 17 year old starting on the same day in the same job as a 25 year old is entitled to £3.86 per hour less.
Commenting, SNP Treasury spokesperson Alison Thewliss MP said: “The Tories’ Living Wage announcement, which will not even come into effect until 2024, is nothing more than smoke and mirrors.
“Any increase in wages for workers is indeed welcome but the devil is in the detail and this does not go far enough.
“The SNP has been clear that all workers should receive a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work whether they are 17, 27 or 57.
“The SNP Scottish Government is working to promote the real Living Wage in all sectors while the Tories are still playing catch up – with this cut price version that still does not meet people’s real living costs and endorses age discrimination.
“The Tory government must go further and bring forward a real Living Wage at the same rate for all workers. Workers must not be short-changed any longer.”