The national living wage was introduced on 1 April in respect of workers aged 25 and over, it amounts to an extra 50p per hour for qualifying workers.
In the first month it has been in force there has been controversy that some large retailers have cut back on staff perks in order to fund the costs. According to reports B&Q, Waitrose and Caffe Nero have taken measures such as not paying Sunday and overtime rates for new shop workers, or not giving staff free food. Carillion, a cleaning company, is considering cuts to their cleaners’ hours as a result of finding itself having to make savings in order to fund the increased wages.
Last week George Osborne warned companies that if they were cutting staff perks to pay for the national living wage then they were not acting within the spirit of the law and that employers should abide by their responsibilities.