• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Union: Hard work does not pay

LOW-WAGE work is the first step to a "poverty pay trap", a union has warned, after new research showed how many people were being priced out of the economy.

A survey of more than 2,000 workers earning £6.50 an hour or less showed that one-third cannot afford to shop where they work, and half did not know how much they would be paid from week to week.

The poll, for Unite, also revealed that most of those earning the minimum wage believed their employer could pay them more.

One-fifth of young minimum wage workers said they had been forced to turn to food banks in the past year.

Unite assistant general secretary Steve Turner said: "Government and ­business in this country are in danger of contriving a situation where hard work does not pay.

"Five million UK workers earn less than a living wage, consigned to an insecure income and increasingly shut out of the economy.

Many of these workers are employed in the shops and services that populate our high streets, yet they cannot afford to shop where they work."

"The crying shame is that low-wage work in this country is no longer the first rung on the employment ladder but actually the first step into a poverty pay trap."

Contextual targeting label: 
Finance

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

247932