Employment Rights

National Minimum Wage rates increase

from 1stOctober 2014:

  • adult hourly rate of the national minimum wage increased from £6.31 to £6.50
  • development rate (which covers workers aged 18-20 years) up 2% from £5.03 to £5.13
  • rate for 16 to 17-year-olds rose by 2% from £3.72 to £3.79/hour
  • for apprentices under the age of 19 and those aged 19 and over in the first 12 months of their apprenticeship, the apprentice minimum wage rate went up by just 5p from £2.68  to £2.73 per hour
  • Next rise is due October 2015
The Living Wage is £7.85/hour outside London, this will be updated in November 2015
Wolverhampton company exposed for failing to pay minimum wage

The Midlands TUC has welcomed the government’s naming and shaming of six Midlands companies for failing to pay its workers the national minimum wage. The January 2015 announcement by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills revealed that:

  • ABC Early Learning and Childcare Centre UK Ltd, Wolverhampton, neglected to pay £5,329.25 to 68 workers

  • Mrs Kelly Jayne Lockley trading as Diva Hair Design, Walsall, neglected to pay £4,103.65 to a worker

  • Callum Austin Ltd trading as Jason Austin Hairdressers, Kettering, neglected to pay £1,899.66 to 2 workers

  • Rumble (Bedworth) Ltd, Nuneaton, neglected to pay £404.41 to a worker

  • Holmes Cleaning Company, Worksop neglected to pay £240.48 to a worker

  • Learnplay Foundation Ltd, West Bromwich, neglected to pay £224.73 to a worker

Lee Barron, Midlands TUC Regional Secretary said: “The national minimum wage is a legal requirement and any firm not paying it should hold their heads in shame. We need to send a loud and clear message to such employers that they have nowhere to hide and will be named and shamed for not paying their workers what they are entitled to.

Greater fines are needed to stop rogue bosses abusing workers by not paying them a legal minimum wage and it is the mission of the Midlands TUC to make sure workers in the region are protected and are paid what they should be.”

Nov 2014 - latest (KPMG) research shows in the west Midlands 494,000 people are being paid below the living wage a quarter of all workers. The situation is getting worse since there are now 21,000 more West Midlands workers than last year, being paid less than they need to live basically.

Paying the living wage would mean a £254 million boost to public finances from the West Midlands - Big savings – £254million – could be made by the public purse if the West Midlands’ (2013 total of) 473,000 low-paid workers received a pay rise and were paid the living wage, according to research published by the Midlands TUC 

The National Minimum Wage was introduced AS LAW by the Labour government in April 1999. It has been uprated as follows:
NMWage    22+yrs      18-21yrs    16-17yrs
Apr-99       £3.60          £3.00          none
Jun-00       £3.70          £3.20          none
Oct-01       £4.10          £3.50          none
Oct-02       £4.20          £3.60          none
Oct-03       £4.50          £3.80          none
Oct-04       £4.85          £4.10          £3.00
Oct-05       £5.05          £4.25          £3.00
Oct-06       £5.35          £4.45          £3.30
Oct-07       £5.52          £4.60          £3.40
Oct-08       £5.73          £4.77          £3.53 
Oct-09       £5.80          £4.83          £3.57
               21+yrs       18-20yrs   16-17yrs   apprentice rate 
Oct-2010    £5.93           £4.92        £3.64         £2.50/hour
Oct-2011    £6.08           £4.98        £3.68         £2.60/hour
Oct-2012    £6.19           £4.98        £3.68         £2.65/hour           Living Wage £7.45 in Midlands
Oct-2013    £6.31           £5.03        £3.72         £2.68/hour        Living wage £7.65 in Midlands  £8.80 in London
current rates:
                21+yrs       18-20yrs   16-17yrs   apprentice rate 
Oct-2014  £6.50          £5.13        £3.79       £2.73/hour     Living wage £7.85 in Midlands  £9.15 in London 
Oct 2015 next increase of NMW
Living wage to be uprated Nov 2015
The accommodation offset increased from £4.91 to £5.08 per day in October 2014.
Pay and Work Rights Helpline    0800 917 2368  https://www.gov.uk/pay-and-work-rights-helpline
Help and advice for employees and employers on the rules of the National minimum wage.
They also deal with complaints from workers who are being paid below the threshold.
opening hours 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday
9am to 1pm Saturday     Closed Sundays and bank holidays
The service is free and confidential. The helpline has a free translation service available in over 100 languages.  You can get advice on issues including:
The TUC has produced a minimum wage calculator - Click HERE to see if you are getting enough?
More information on the government's website

220,000 care workers looking after some of the most vulnerable people in the UK are being illegally paid below the national minimum wage of £6.50 an hour.

This is in part because whilst the advertised rate may be above the minimum wage, most care workers are on zero hours or temporary agency contracts, with the employers cutting out paid time wherever they can. A full day on the job can translate into only a handful of paid hours.

In 2011 and 2013 HMRC investigated the care sector and found that only half of care providers were paying the national minimum wage. Thanks to their investigation several companies were forced to pay care workers the money that they were legally owed.

But now investigations have stopped again and, coupled with reductions in care budgets, the situation has become worse.

Vince Cable could instruct HMRC to investigate again, to name and shame some of the biggest care providers in the country, but so far he hasn’t.

This practice is hurting carers, and hurting the people who need their care. Care workers are pressured to leave their visits early to avoid having their wages pulled down. Many good care workers get fed up with the situation and find other work, and the high turnover means a lack of continuity of care.

Care workers’ union UNISON believe Vince Cable hasn’t acted in part because there hasn’t been pressure from the public. Now is the time to change that.

Sign the UNISON petition now!


The Midlands TUC has reacted with anger and fury at the revelation (Dec 2014) that five Midlands companies have been named and shamed by the Government for failing to pay its workers the National Minimum Wage.

The announcement by the Government Department, BIS, revealed that:

  • Walsall FC Community Programme neglected to pay £9,353.63 to 6 workers.
  • Barber Institute of Fine Arts in Birmingham neglected to pay £25,553.40 to 16 workers.
  • Little Bears Day Nursery in Nottingham neglected to pay £9,298.86 to 2 workers
  • Civil Defence Supply Ltd in Lincoln neglected to pay £3,454.80 to a worker.
  • Premier Autos in Hednesford, Staffordshire neglected to pay £339.12 to a worker


It was announced (15 -1-2014), that fines for failing to pay the minimum wage will be quadrupled from £5,000 to £20,000 in a bid to protect workers' rights.  It seems that today we have come a step closer to promoting equality and a safe working environment. It was announced by Vince Cable, the Business Secretary that any employer not paying their workers the minimum wage may now face a fine of £20,000 in comparison to the previous fine of £5,000.

These measures spectacularly change the Tory narrative on the minimum wage. It wasn’t so long ago that Tories were suggesting the government allow the NMW to “wither on the vine”.  As we approach the next election, the message has changed. Now the government is looking at measures to help shame wrongdoers and highlight what a serious offence it is to pay people less than the minimum salary rate.

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:

“The TUC has long argued that successive governments have been soft on minimum wage dodgers.  The plans announced today to quadruple penalties for rogue bosses who cheat staff out of the minimum wage should make employers think twice before illegally underpaying their staff.

“It’s great that the penalties for flouting the minimum wage have been raised and that it’s easier to name and shame offending employers. It’s crucial now that HMRC is given the resources they need to enforce these new rights properly.”

- The TUC estimates that more than 150,000 workers are still underpaid so there is still more to be done. The TUC would like to see a new focus on enforcing the minimum wage for migrant workers, who find it particularly difficult to get their rights; the creation of a new power for trade unions to take representative and group actions to employment tribunal rather than having to rely on naming individual workers; and a sharpening of the incentives to pay the minimum wage by ensuring that all employers who are caught underpaying are subject to a financial penalty.

A  poll of 1,163 people in full and part time work,  as part of the Unions21 Fair Work Commission has found three quarters of working people (74%) would be more likely to buy products or services from a company that pays its workforce the Living Wage rather than the Minimum Wage.

The poll also found:

-83% of working people think the current Minimum Wage isn't enough to meet Living Costs.

-71% of UK employees – 21 Million workers – report that their wages have fallen in real terms over the last two years.

-A quarter of workers say the decisions as to 'who is paid what' in their workplace are unfair.

-71% would support a cap on bonuses at double total base salary.

To read more visit: www.fairworkcommission.co.uk

If you have any questions about the National Minimum Wage phone the

National Minimum Wage Helpline on Tel 0845 6000 678  lines are open from 9am- 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Wolverhampton, Bilston & District
Trades Union Council     (established 1865)  
Secretary: Nick Kelleher   
PO Box 2917 Wolverhampton WV2 2YA     
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
(07932 797139  Wolves TUC Facebook  

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