Shadow Home Secretary unsure how much the minimum wage is

28 September 2021, 09:21 | Updated: 28 September 2021, 10:01

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Shadow Home Secretary Nick Thomas-Symonds admitted he did not know how much the current national minimum wage is, despite calling for an increase.

Put on the spot by Nick, the Labour MP was quizzed on the amount.

"You know what the minimum wage is now then, don't you?" Nick asked.

Mr Thomas-Symonds initially said he did know, but then rowed back saying it was "below £10," but he didn't know the actual figure "off the top of my head."

"So, you're talking about an increase from a figure, but you don't know what the initial figure is?"

Nick was quick to point out that the minimum wage was £8.91 for adults over 23.

Asked about photos of Sir Keir Starmer seemingly supporting a £15 minimum wage in the past, the Labour MP said the Labour leader had been "showing solidarity with those workers who were seeking to fight for it".

He told Nick Ferrari that "what we will look at is the particular economic circumstances and make sure we offer something we can deliver".

His colleague Andy McDonald has resigned from Labour's front bench, in a row over the party's policy on how much the minimum wage should increase by.

Mr McDonald, who was shadow employment secretary until Monday, quit during Sir Keir Starmer's first in-person party conference as leader, claiming he was told by the leader's office to argue against a £15 per hour minimum wage and bringing statutory sick pay up to the same level as the living wage.

The current Labour Party policy - as part of a "new deal for workers" - argues for an immediate minimum wage increase under a Labour government to £10 per hour and was launched earlier in the conference.

In a letter to Sir Keir, the former frontbencher said making the argument was "something I could not do".

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