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What Tories really think of the minimum wage

David Cameron’s welfare minister has advocated treating those most in need differently by paying them below the national minimum wage. Lord David Freud, talking amongst friends at Conservative Party Conference, said he thought there was “a group” of disabled people who are “not worth the full wage”. Lord Freud is not the only Conservative seeking to undermine the minimum wage:

In 2012, Andrea Leadsom said that businesses with three employees and fewer should be exempt from minimum wage, as well as regulation like maternity and paternity rights. Leadsom said:

I genuinely think we do need to do more for growth . . . above all we have to focus on deregulation.” She continued: “No minimum wage; no unfair dismissal; no maternity or paternity rights; no national insurance or employer pension contributions; a flat rate of tax; no red tape.”

Leadsom also argued (£) that the “massive hurdle of regulation” was daunting and meant people were put off self-employment by the complexity of setting up a business. Tory MP Dominic Raab called for the minimum wage to be suspended for 16-21 year olds:

Why not suspend the minimum wage for 16 to 21 year olds working for small businesses, in order to give them a foot on the ladder? The talented and hard-working won’t stay on the bottom rung for long, but they must first be given the chance to work.”

Tory Philip Davies MP said that disabled people should be allowed to work for less than the minimum wage. He said it should be allowed for disabled people to be paid less than the minimum wage, arguing it was a “hindrance” to jobseekers.

Additionally, Tory MPs Christopher Chope, Peter Bone, Mark Field, Adam Afriyie, Douglas Carswell (UKIP) and David Nuttall all signed a Bill in June 2010 calling for employees to be allowed to opt out of the minimum wage.



  1. William Jones says:

    Those deliberately looking for negativity will never recognise the Minimum Wage as being one of the finest achievements of the last Labour Government.

    Whilst we may have arguments we may put forward about what level it should be set at,nonetheless we should be be proud and ready to defend it at every available opportunity.

    We have here examples of what the Tories would do.Of course they don’t believe in it,they believe it is an obstacle to Profits for their friends.

    Though viewing events since 2010 their friends haven’t exactly done to badly to say the least!The Tories though want even more profit for their friends made at the expense of low pay for workers.

    1. Robert says:

      The idea of the minimum wage was to lift one million low paid workers up to a level they would get the minimum to live on. What happened was the retail giants saw a means of lowering wages and gaining profits and they actually altered Contracts to the Min wage. One could say labour new this and this was a form of wage control.

      But to get onto what the Tories think of the min wage and Freud, he was of course a labour minister and he would have done the same if labour had won the election in 2010 so the idea of labour being concerned by Freud and Cameron is just labour trying it’s best to gain some brownie points . Freud and ATOS and UNUM Provident are all labour. all the Tories did was take Freud and used him in the same way that labour would have used him.

      Al in all two political parties struggling with the same ideology.

  2. James Martin says:

    Let’s not forget how a nasty tosser like Freud got to his current position. He was actually employed by the last Labour government to review welfare, and worked closely with our own tossers like Tony Blair and James Purnell who set him on his way. Yes, the Tories made him a baron and allowed him to carry on, but the Labour Party created him politically.

    And worst of all, this is not some isolated event for Freud. He has had many others, and while he was an investment banker and financial consultant (hence his friendship with various New Labour clowns) he regularly engaged in activity that would now be illegal – talking up companies in papers like the FT that he had shares in but were heading for problems he knew about and then selling before those problems became known to the public (Freud the Fraud is an apt description of his character).

    So yes, while the scumbag needs to be picketed, hounded and shouted down every time he now slithers out from under his stone in the future, we also need to ask why it is that leading New Labour politicians thought he was the perfect candidate to advise them on welfare reform in the first place.

  3. Pauline Sharp says:

    I am absolutely disgusted by Freuds remarks. Completely shameful and he should have resigned by now. And David Cameron is even less of a man for not removing him from his position. Exploitation not to say discrimination./

    1. Robert says:

      He also told labour the same thing in 2003 but it was left on the table because Blair had his mind on wars, but it was put forward for those with mental health issues it was felt that people working at jobs like Remploy or other employment, should be able to call work, training, and then pay a rate they felt was acceptable.

      this is not New for example I worked at a job for 16 hours a week training, I was paid £20 for these hours which was just over a £1 an hour OK I kept my benefits but I still worked 20 hours which today would have paid me about £97, but all I would get is £20 so making the employer money.

      Tories labour the simple fact the difference well that is the issue what is the difference.

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