Hello and a Happy New Year to all our members and visitors to this site.
And so we find ourselves at the start of a new year. Before you know it Christmas will only be a footnote on your credit card bill and the lights will be back in the loft. It’s back to work, back to the old routine and farewell to lounging in front of the telly.
For some of you, the return to work could not come at a better time, while for others, a few more day’s r and r probably wouldn’t have gone amiss. But however you feel about clocking on again, there’s plenty of reasons to be optimistic. For one, the Brexit issue is finally resolved, giving employers and employees much needed clarity about where the country is heading. We now know that 31st of January is the exit date – what remains to be seen is whether Boris Johnson and co. can negotiate a trade agreement that’s worthy of the hard working people of these islands. One thing is for sure: we will be challenging his government to get the very best deal they can.
Then of course there’s the increase in the minimum wage from £8.21 an hour to £8.72. A hardened cynic might suggest that this cash boost for low-paid workers is a transparent attempt to repay voters for backing the conservatives during the election. While this might well be the case, The Workers Union cautiously welcomes any measures that give working people a greater share of the value they create in our economy. In fact, we’d like to see Mr Johnson go further and pledge a increase to at least £10 an hour by 2022. If he really is the kind of One Nation conservative leader he’s cracked up to be, then this would be an important sign that he’s taking the issue of wealth inequality seriously.
We look forward to helping you in 2020.