14th July 2015
Minister Nash welcomes historic legislation putting Low Pay Commission on a statutory footing
The Minister for Business and Employment Ged Nash TD has announced that the Low Pay Commission Bill has passed all stages in the Houses of the Oireachtas. The Bill is now being sent to President Higgins for early signature into law.
The legislation establishes the newly formed Low Pay Commission on a statutory basis. This independent body is tasked with advising the Government on the appropriate rate of the National Minimum Wage and other policy areas related to low pay.
The Low Pay Commission is expected to present its first report to the Minister next week.
Minister Nash said, “Making work pay is central to what this Government is doing in office and establishing the Low Pay Commission is a key element of that. As our economic recovery takes hold every worker, including those on low pay, should be given the opportunity to share in the hard won benefits.”
“The passing of the Low Pay Commission Bill marks the delivery of a key commitment in the Statement of Priorities agreed last summer between the Taoiseach and the Tánaiste. This represents a major institutional reform which will see the issue of low pay being tackled in a sustained, structured and informed way.”
"For the first time, the setting of recommended rate of the national minimum wage will be done independently and on an evidence-based approach. The historic legislation passed today underpins the work of the Low Pay Commission and will see it review the minimum wage on a yearly basis from now on, and examine other matters related to low pay.”
Dr Donal de Buitléir chairs the nine member Commission, which is made up of representatives of low paid workers, employers and academics. They have been meeting since February to examine a range of issues relating to the appropriate rate of the minimum wage including:
• the changes in earnings since the minimum wage was last increased
• the unemployment and employment rates generally
• the expected impact of a change to the minimum wage on employment, the cost of living and national competitiveness
• changes in income distribution and
• currency exchange rates
The Commissioners have also received submissions and consulted directly with workers and employers during their considerations.
The current rate of the National Minimum Wage is €8.65. It has remained at that rate since 2007, except for a period in 2011 when it was cut by €1 by the previous Government. The current Government reversed that cut in July 2011.
For further information please contact Deirdre Grant, Special Adviser to Minister Nash
(m) 0860484279 (o) 6312227 or Press Office, D/Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, ph. 6312200 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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