Young workers are missing out on £200m a year in minimum wage pay, according to new TUC analysis published today.
The analysis – published on the 20th anniversary of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) – shows that the average 21-24 year-old minimum wage worker is earning £800 a year less than over 25s.
The TUC is calling for the anniversary to be marked by bringing all over 21s onto the full minimum wage rate and for the minimum wage to be raised to £10 an hour as soon as possible.
The TUC first called for the minimum wage to be introduced in 1986.
TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Unions played a key role in winning the minimum wage at a time when many were warning that it would bankrupt the country. But as we mark its 20th anniversary today, we can see there’s still more to be done.
“Young workers are still getting a raw deal on pay. Their bills aren’t any cheaper, but they have to make ends meet with less. That’s just not fair. And with in-work poverty rising, we need to make the minimum wage fit for the future by raising it to £10 as soon as possible.”