Should we wage war on poverty pay?

Gone are the days when the idea of a Minimum Wage sparked controversy about the impact it would have on jobs. Outside of free-market think-tank circles, it is universally accepted as a standard below which no decent employer must stoop.  Commentators even suggest following Switzerland’s proposals for a Universal Basic Income – but where does the money come from?  Zero hour contracts are also controversial, but advocates say job creation in a depressed economic climate trump arguments about secure pay.  Is any job better than none?  Why can’t our economy generate enough well-paid work to go round?

Filmed at the Battle of Ideas, the speakers are James Bartholemew, author of Welfare of Nations; Jon Bryan, regional support official, University and College Union (UCU); Dr Glynne Williams, senior lecturer in industrial relations, University of Leicester; Jane Wills, professor of human geography, Queen Mary University of London.  The chair is Bríd Hehir, writer, researcher, retired nurse and fundraiser.

Battle of Ideas session details