No, I will not take interventions.
The Government could set an example by insisting that the contractors they use pay the living wage, not the minimum wage. That would be positive. Treasury Ministers could set an even better example. When Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, which is the Treasury’s responsibility, put out its cleaning contract to ISS and was offered a contract price based on either the minimum wage or the living wage, why did it choose the minimum wage? It could have set an example by choosing the living wage, but it chose the lowest common denominator. Low pay is a national scandal. It is not the fault of hard-working, low-paid families in my constituency or anywhere else in the country. It is the Government’s responsibility to address this issue.