National Minimum Wage

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Industry – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 18th January 2001.

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Photo of Ian Davidson Ian Davidson Labour/Co-operative, Glasgow Pollok 12:00 am, 18th January 2001

Is my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State aware of an economic collapse following the introduction of the minimum wage, of the kind predicted by Conservative Members? That certainly does not seem to have happened in my part of the country. Will my right hon. Friend consider arranging for the level of the minimum wage to be raised, so as to reduce the amount of Government expenditure, such as the working families tax credit, that effectively subsidises bad employers? We should not be paying out Government money to subsidise poor employers.

May I also say that I deprecate those who would try to hold down the level of the minimum wage to £5? It really ought to be far more than that.