‘Minimum wage isn’t fit for purpose’: Workers can’t afford to live in 16 UK cities

It’s not just London and cities in the south where people are struggling to make ends meet because of higher rents and living costs. Edinburgh, Durham and York have all made it into the top 10 least affordable UK cities for people on minimum wage.

The research by Investing Reviews looked at the least affordable cities for people aged 23 and over who are working in jobs that pay the minimum wage.

It looked at their take home pay, cost of renting and other typical living costs to determine how much disposable income they had left at the end of the day.

Unsurprisingly, Westminster and the City of London came in at first and second place but cities such as St Albans, Bath and Brighton & Hove followed closely behind.

The findings discovered that there was a huge shortfall for people who are paid the minimum wage. Residents in Bath were left with a deficit of £681.36 a month after forking out for rent and bills.

READ MORE:  Universal Credit: What to do if you can’t pay your rent or mortgage

Campaigners have been calling on Chancellor Rishi Sunak to raise the minimum wage or face millions of young people being plunged into poverty.

Youth Fight for Jobs descended on Leeds at the weekend to express their concern at rising youth unemployment, which they fear will only get worse now the furlough scheme has come to an end.

Campaigner Alex Hutchinson told ITV News that MPs must put a stop to zero hour contracts and called for “an immediate increase of minimum wage to £12-an-hour which would lift millions of workers out of poverty, or on the brink of poverty”.

Government statistics show that young people have been some of the worst hit by the economic downturn during the pandemic.

Even if reports are correct, the National Living wage won’t increase until April 2022. Currently the National Living Wage stands at:

£8.91 for those 23 and over
£8.36 for 21 to 22-year-olds
£6.56 for those aged 18 to 20
£4.62 for under 18s
£4.30 for apprentices.

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