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Low Pay Act 2016  

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Caroline Blakesley
(@caroline-blakesley)
Prime Minister & MP for Hammersmith
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 158
15/07/2019 9:30 pm  

https://docs.google.com/document/d/161M06hvHlM86gUgVtzydlGk2hJRTShjERGsBVoNiyg0/edit?usp=sharing

Caroline Blakesley
Prime Minister
MP for Hammersmith

Parliamentary: Unknown (13)
Media: Unknown (17)
Policy: Unknown (18)


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Caroline Blakesley
(@caroline-blakesley)
Prime Minister & MP for Hammersmith
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 158
15/07/2019 9:30 pm  

Mr Speaker,

I beg leave to introduce the following legislation to the House.

Mr Speaker, the problem of low pay is rampant throughout the United Kingdom. While the National Minimum Wage, introduced under the previous Labour government, helped to provide pay increase to those most in need in our society, there are deficiencies in the legislation. The National Minimum Wage did a great deal to confront the problem of extreme low pay. However, there remains a significant population of workers that are confronted with low pay - perhaps up to 90% of workers in low pay make more than the minimum wage, but still fall into low pay.

The Low Pay Commission did excellent work in introducing the National Minimum Wage. However, the task today is not to deal in minimums, but rather how to deal with the issue of low pay generally. Unfortunately, this goes beyond the current remit of the Low Pay Commission. If we are to make tackling the burning crisis of low pay in our society, we must dedicate the machinery of Government to doing so. We seek to do this by mandating that the Low Pay Commission, beyond setting the National Minimum Wage, become a statutory advisor to the Government on the causes and consequences of low pay and strategies that can be pursued to reduce the incidence of low pay in British society.

Second, Mr Speaker, we acknowledge that there are deficiencies in confronting failure to pay the National Minimum Wage. There is limited communication between Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, which is tasked with enforcement, and the local authorities and other agencies that have the ability to identify instances of failure to pay the minimum wage. We propose to rectify this by creating gateways through which this communication can occur and lead to greater reporting of those that seek to cheat minimum wage workers out of the pay to which they are entitled.

Third, Mr Speaker, there is a pressing need to provide greater certainty for business. Currently, the minimum wage is set six months in advance with expected compliance by businesses. This amounts to forcing businesses to adjust their policies with relatively little advance notice. We propose to rectify this by having the Low Pay Commission provide some certainty for businesses by publishing, each year, targets for the next year’s minimum wage, as well as targets over the intermediate term. In doing so, we aim to provide businesses with the tools necessary to better plan for changes in minimum wage policy.

These steps, Mr Speaker, we believe will provide a great deal of benefit in improving the state of low pay in British society, helping all workers gain access to adequate pay.

I commend this bill to the House.

Caroline Blakesley
Prime Minister
MP for Hammersmith

Parliamentary: Unknown (13)
Media: Unknown (17)
Policy: Unknown (18)


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Caroline Blakesley
(@caroline-blakesley)
Prime Minister & MP for Hammersmith
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 158
15/07/2019 11:21 pm  

Mr Speaker, I beg leave to move that this bill be read a second time.

Caroline Blakesley
Prime Minister
MP for Hammersmith

Parliamentary: Unknown (13)
Media: Unknown (17)
Policy: Unknown (18)


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Josh
 Josh
(@michael-kirton)
Canadian AV A-team
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 50
17/07/2019 8:30 pm  

Speaker Harman

Order! Second reading. Beginning debate...

Your friendly neighbourhood Canadian AV


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Stewart Greene
(@stewartgreene)
Active Member
Joined: 3 months ago
Posts: 17
17/07/2019 11:52 pm  

Madam Speaker,

I commend this piece of legislation brought forward by the Prime Minister. By building on the prior achievements of the Low Pay Commission and broadening its remit this bill will go beyond protecting a 'minimum' but in helping millions stuck in low pay jobs, which are often also the most insecure. In providing lengthier consultation periods over the setting of the National Minimum Wage we can help alleviate some of this insecurity

In providing greater cooperation between Westminster and local authorities it will help clamp down on lawbreakers who pay below the National Minimum Wage, a very nessecary step to help ensure a fair deal for workers.

Stewart Greene
Labour MP for Birkenhead (2010-Present)
Parliamentary Experience (8)
Media Experience (6)
Policy Experience (8)


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Steven Andrews
(@steven-andrews)
Member
Joined: 5 months ago
Posts: 120
19/07/2019 12:52 pm  

Mr. Speaker,
This bill appears to be a classic case of the government either trying to do nothing while looking like it is doing something or trying to cook up causes to do something it wants to do anyway.

Let me start off by saying that I am not opposed to extending the time horizon on binding minimum wage projections.  A bit of stability here doesn't hurt.  So there's at least a stray good piece in this bill, and were that a standalone bill I think we might be inclined to vote for it.  Mind you, five years might be a bit much...if the minimum wage legislation had been in effect at the time, if anyone had tried to tell us what such a wage would have been in 1976 back in 1971 I think they might have missed the mark by a few pence.  Call it a hunch.  But moving on from that, well, it's just the rest of the bill that is at issue.  So, on to those issues.

First of all, it feels very much like the Government is engaging in a spot of mission creep for the Low Pay Commission.  That commission was, in my understanding, supposed to help set the Minimum Wage and Living Wage.  It was not supposed to get into vague pronouncements of the effects of various other things.  It had, in effect, one job and now it is having another job lobbed at it.

That brings me to the second, and honestly more frustrating, issue: The so-called "poverty premium".  Mr. Speaker, this metric by its very nature is doomed to be at best a political creature rather than a meaningful metric with which to set policy.  We have and have had commissions on the various sources of troubles for the poor people of our great nation, but trying to generate an average figure seems to be quite the fool's errand.  There are a great many idiosyncrasies in what families in a given area will experience that the error bars on such a metric...some of which will be down to choices, some of which will be down to spots of good luck or bad luck...that the overall metric is likely to be of little use for anything except demagoguery.  I'd call it all but a certainty that the Government of any given day will seriously muck about with such a metric to achieve whatever ends are sought.

More to the point, Mr. Speaker, generating this number, while likely to create occasional shouts of shame from some part of the House or the press, won't likely do anything.  It won't even give the Government useful information, such as "Car repair shops are gouging" or "payday loan sharks are out of control".  It will simply generate a top-line number that doesn't do anything but indicate that something stinks without proposing meaningful ways to actually address those issues.

And that, Mr. Speaker, is the scandal of this bill: The Government does not want to address the scandals of those things which actually hurt the poor, it wants to generate a meaningless number so it can crow about how bad things are without even getting information to fix things.  And that, Mr. Speaker, that number and the inherent temptation to manipulate and demagogue, is why this bill ought not to be passed.

Steven Andrews, MP for Croydon South

34 Policy/18 Media/23 Parliamentary


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Caroline Blakesley
(@caroline-blakesley)
Prime Minister & MP for Hammersmith
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 158
19/07/2019 3:04 pm  

Madam Speaker,

I must reject a number of the comments by the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer regarding this legislation.

First, I thank him for his comments on setting targets for the National Minimum Wage and wish to clarify the intent of this legislation. This bill obligates the Low Pay Commission to provide target levels for the National Minimum Wage in order to provide some guidance to businesses such that they can plan appropriately. This guidance may, of course, be altered based on economic conditions. More importantly, Madam Speaker, the Low Pay Commission will publish guidance up to five years out, but we anticipate that this will also include guidance for the next year or the next two years.

On the matter of expanding the remit of the Low Pay Commission, Madam Speaker, the Commission itself supports this expansion. We are reaching a time when the National Minimum Wage has been successful in lifting millions out of extreme low pay. The challenge that we now face is tackling low pay, the phenomenon where nearly 5 million Britons earn less than the two-thirds of the typical hourly pay. Having a statutory advisor on this matter is not a cure all - it is a step in the right direction. A step, I will add, that is also backed by Professor Sir George Bain, the inaugural chairman of the Low Pay Commission and one of the nation's foremost thinkers on low pay and incomes.

Regarding the poverty premium, Madam Speaker, the Government is open to modifying this provision. However, we find this information to be important for understanding how poverty is perpetuated for people in low pay. And the reality is that poverty is perpetuated for those in low pay, Madam Speaker. People in low pay, on average, pay more for electricity, pay more for water, pay more for essential goods and services generally. Establishing firm reporting on this metric, Madam Speaker, will be essential to fully understanding the scope of the challenge that we face.

As to the claim that the Government is doing nothing on this front - that is wrong. The Government has introduced social tariffs in the water industry to ensure that those in low pay are not forced to pay exorbitant amounts for water. The Government is preparing legislation to facilitating switching on to lower cost power plans, as those in low pay are more likely to be on more expensive single variable tariffs as opposed to lower cost fixed rate tariffs. This legislation is not intended to be a cure all, but it is intended to move us in the right direction.

Caroline Blakesley
Prime Minister
MP for Hammersmith

Parliamentary: Unknown (13)
Media: Unknown (17)
Policy: Unknown (18)


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Caroline Blakesley
(@caroline-blakesley)
Prime Minister & MP for Hammersmith
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 158
06/08/2019 5:57 pm  

Madam Speaker,

I beg leave to introduce a programming motion for this legislation such that, following carry-over, 72 hours shall be allocated for debate.

Caroline Blakesley
Prime Minister
MP for Hammersmith

Parliamentary: Unknown (13)
Media: Unknown (17)
Policy: Unknown (18)


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The Speaker
(@the-speaker)
Member Moderator
Joined: 2 months ago
Posts: 7
12/08/2019 6:33 am  

Division, clear the lobbies!

The Rt Hon Harriet Harman QC MP
Speaker of the House of Commons (2016-Present)
MP for Camberwell and Peckham (1982-Present)


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General Goose
(@general-goose)
Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 362
12/08/2019 3:20 pm  

Aye

Graham Adiputera (Lib Dem - Sutton and Cheam)
Deputy Prime Minister
Liberal Democrat Leader
Foreign Secretary
Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Climate Change
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Technology

Parliamentary - 36
Media - 53
Policy - 48


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Sylviane Jaubert
(@ege)
Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 155
12/08/2019 3:38 pm  

Yea

Sylviane Jaubert MP
MP for Cynon Valley

Formerly as The Rt Hon Ariadne "Ari" Suchet MP
Former Prime Minister and Leader of the Labour Party

"TrashPotato Today at 2:11 AM
my friend offered me a bottle of vodka and i sucked the vodka out the bottle like a baby sucking a titty"


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Astrid Vincenti
(@astrid-vincenti)
Member
Joined: 6 months ago
Posts: 33
12/08/2019 4:13 pm  

Aye

Astrid Vincenti | Labour Co-Op | MP for Tynemouth
Policy (17), Media (12), Parliament (11)


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Caroline Blakesley
(@caroline-blakesley)
Prime Minister & MP for Hammersmith
Joined: 4 months ago
Posts: 158
12/08/2019 5:04 pm  

Aye

Caroline Blakesley
Prime Minister
MP for Hammersmith

Parliamentary: Unknown (13)
Media: Unknown (17)
Policy: Unknown (18)


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Faye Gallacher
(@faye-gallacher)
Member
Joined: 6 months ago
Posts: 247
13/08/2019 4:07 am  

Aye.

"[we] would rather die than leave the Labour Party." - Emily Thornberry.


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Anthony Harte
(@anthony-harte)
Member
Joined: 7 months ago
Posts: 27
14/08/2019 11:39 pm  

AYE.

Anthony Harte MP
Wirral West | Labour Party
Parliamentary: 1
Media: 1
Policy: 3

(Prior to 1 July 2019: Asil Ediboglu)


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