The Low Pay Commission (LPC) has recommended that the national minimum wage should increase to €10.10, a rise of 30 cent. The commission advises the Government on the appropriate rate for statutory minimum pay in advance of the annual budget.
The minimum wage is the minimum employers must pay almost all workers over 18 years of age. Fórsa and other unions advocate for the living wage, an evidence-based estimate of the hourly rate required for a full-time worker to have a minimum acceptable standard of living.
The living wage currently stands at €12.30.
A Fórsa spokesperson said: “More needs to be done to bridge the €2.20 an hour gap between the living wage and the minimum wage, including in the public sector where many clerical officers, school secretaries, SNAs and others are still paid below the living wage.”
The LPC is made up of an independent chairperson appointed by the Government, plus representatives of unions, employers and other stakeholders.
The living wage is set on an annual basis by the Living Wage Technical Group. It takes account of basic cost of living expenses including rent, healthcare, transport and recreation. The group recently cited rising rental costs as the main factor driving the living wage increase for the second year in a row.