"The government has done very little so far to support disabled workers"
Research by the Trades Union Congress revealed that 7 in 10 (69%) of workers with disabilities earn less than £15 an hour, causing fresh calls to raise the minimum wage and ‘stamp out’ insecure work.
The analysis highlighted the increased likelihood for disabled workers to be in low paid jobs than non-disabled people, with half of non-disabled employees earning less than £15 per hour in comparison.
However in some areas of the UK the number is much higher, with more than nine in 10 disabled employees in the North East and Wales earning less than £15 an hour, compared to around three in five (60% and 58% respectively) non-disabled workers.
The trade union body has called on the government to introduce mandatory disability pay gap reporting along with banning zero hour contracts to address the inequality in workers pay.
The TUC also wants to see fines for employers who do not deliver disabled workers’ legal right to reasonable adjustments.
TUC general secretary, Paul Nowak, accused the government of doing ‘very little’ to support disabled workers struggling with the cost-of-living crisis.
“Disabled workers are struggling to make ends meet in this cost-of-living crisis, with rocketing bills and soaring inflation,” said Nowak.
“Every worker deserves a decent job on decent pay. Being disabled should not mean you’re paid any less or are stuck on worse terms and conditions.
“The government has done very little so far to support disabled workers. It’s time for ministers to increase the minimum wage to £15 per hour as soon as possible and put an end to insecure work by banning zero hours contracts.
“And they must also introduce mandatory disability pay gap reporting to shine a light on inequality at work. Without this, millions of disabled people face a future of lower pay and in-work poverty.”
(Photo credit: Flickr / Creative Commons)
Hannah Davenport is trade union reporter at Left Foot Forward
Left Foot Forward’s trade union reporting is supported by the Barry Amiel and Norman Melburn Trust