By: Pramod Thomas
The increase in the national minimum wage and national living wage hike came into effect on Saturday (1), benefiting around three million people.
The national living wage will see an increase of 9.7 per cent, up to £10.42 for workers aged 23+, as well as an increase for younger workers on the national minimum wage.
The rate rises include a 9.7 per cent increase in the national living wage, from £9.50 per hour to £10.42, the equivalent of more than £1,600 extra per year before tax for someone working full time.
The wage increase will benefit workers in industries like retail, hospitality and cleaning and maintenance, as well as women from BAME backgrounds, a statement said.
The increase will put more money in the pockets of 2.9 million of the lowest-paid workers across the country.
According to the statement, the increase is the largest ever cash increase to the national living wage, and highest increase in percentage terms since its introduction in 2016, helping to protect the incomes of millions of workers from high cost-of-living.
Business and trade minister Kevin Hollinrake said: “Today we are now increasing the National Living Wage to record levels, boosting the incomes of almost 3 million people.
“This pay rise will help families across the country, as we focus on our five priorities, including growing the economy and halving inflation.”
The full increases from 1 April
The government action to support households with the cost of living came into effect on Saturday (1), including extending the Energy Price Guarantee at its current level for another three months, which keeps energy bills at £2,500 for a typical household until the end of June.
The UK also extended the freeze on fuel duty, saving the average car driver in the UK £100 over the next year.
The department for work and pensions have also announced £842 million to help the most vulnerable households across England. The extension of the Household Support Fund, which came into effect on Saturday gave councils additional cash to directly help the most in need with essential food and energy costs until the end of March 2024.
The department for transport have also announced a £2 fare cap for bus users which is being extended until the end of June.
The government said that the 2023 national minimum wage for 21 and 22 years is 52 per cent higher and the national minimum wage for apprentices is 60 per cent higher than the 2015 rates.