People Before Profit Launch Bill To Ensure Equal Rights For Young Workers

At a media conference today at Leinster House, People Before Profit launched a new Bill to ensure equal rights for young workers, guaranteeing uniform pay for all earning the minimum wage.

The Bill, the National Minimum Wage (Equal Pay for Young Workers) Bill 2021 (Attached), removes discrimination against 16-20 year olds who do not earn the same rate of the minimum wage as those older than them.

The Bill would allow for all earning the minimum wage to receive 100% of this regardless of their age. Since 1 January 2021, the national minimum wage is €10.20 for people aged 20 and over, under 18 it’s €7.14 (70%), aged 18 it’s € 8.16 (80%), aged 19 it’s €9.18 (90%). Ireland also has the highest rate in Europe of those aged 18-29 earning the minimum wage at 41%.

Speaking on the launch of the Bill, People Before Profit’s spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Paul Murphy TD, said:

“It is blatant discrimination that people who are under the age of 20 would be entitled to earn less that the minimum wage. It is ridiculous that this is the case. It assumes that people under the age of 20 receive a cut in their rent or living costs due to their age. What we need is to abandon this discrimination immediately, legislate for equal access to the full minimum wage regardless of age and pressure the government to instigate a living wage to €15 per hour so that people can have a fair return for the long hours that they work.”

Notes for Editors

·        Since 1 January 2021, the national minimum wage is €10.20 for people aged 20 and over, under 18 it’s €7.14 (70%), aged 18 it’s € 8.16 (80%), aged 19 it’s €9.18 (90%) The Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2018 abolished training rates and calculates below minimum wage rates based solely on age. 

·        In Q4 2020, 60,500 employees between 15 and 24 earned the minimum wage or lower. A further 22,400 employees between 25 and 34 earned the minimum wage or lower. Across all age groups, a total of 127,600 employees earn the minimum wage or lower. Of these 105,100 earn the minimum wage and 22,400 earn less than the minimum wage.

·        CSO figures from Q4 2019 show that 10,200 people were on sub minimum wage rates as a result of being 19 or under.

Press Releases

Sign up For Our Newsletter

Get our Weekly newsletter with all of the latest from People Before Profit