Economy

AAT backs Government increase to national living wage

The Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) has backed the Government’s decision to raise the national living wage from £8.21 to £8.72 for those aged 25 and over with effect from April 2020.
Earlier this week prime minister Boris Johnson said that “hard work should always pay” as he announced the increases which will also see the national living wage rise from £7.70 to £8.20 for 21 to 24 year olds,from £6.15 to £6.45 for 18 to 20 year olds,from £4.35 to £4.55 for 16 to 17 year olds and from £3.90 to £4.15 for apprentices aged under 19 or in the first year of their apprenticeship.

The move has been backed by AAT with it adding that the National Minimum Wage legislation affects many of AAT’s 140,000 members, whether they are students, apprentices, small business owners, licensed accountants or where they are employed by national and multinational companies.

Phil Hall, AAT head of public affairs and public policy, said: “AAT is pleased to see that the Government have agreed to implement the recommendations of the independent Low Pay Commission and substantially increase the national living wage from April 2020.

“However, over 6,000 organisations, including AAT, have gained Living Wage Foundation accreditation on the basis of paying a real living wage of at least £10.75 in London and £9.30 across the rest of the UK – so Government has a long way to go to catch up with what has been widely accepted as a more appropriate minimum wage.”

When last surveyed on the issue, the AAT Minimum Wage Survey found that 70% of its members wanted the Government to scrap the existing minimum wage structure and replace it with the Living Wage Foundation rates of pay.

Hall added: “We appreciate that many businesses are facing pressures and that employees are too – finding a balance is key to ensuring everyone gets a fair days pay for a fair day’s work and the increases planned for April 2020 are a step towards achieving this.”

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