Photo: DANIEL SORABJI/AFP/Getty Images

NFRN National President Stuart Reddish has raised concerns relating to the unexpected announcement on minimum wage with Andrea Leadsom, the BEIS Secretary of State.

During the ‘Conversation with Rt Hon Andrea Leadsom’ event held on October 1 at Conservative Party Conference, Reddish asked Leadsom whether there could be any government aid to soften the blow for smaller businesses.

Responding, Leadsom said she felt the government were trying to protect these businesses by ensuring everyone in the business, including owners that were often working overtime, got the recompense they deserved.

Speaking afterwards, Reddish asked the government to consult with the sector “to make sure that this policy doesn’t have the opposite effect on businesses than was intended.”

“I will be looking at ways in which we can collaborate with the government to ensure the implementation of this policy takes into consideration the fact that businesses are often working on a small margin which will be further eroded by this change,” he added.

Chancellor Sajid Javid on 30 September said the government would aim to raise the National Living Wage to two-thirds of median earnings and extend the same minimum wage to younger workers.

The proposal would take minimum pay for those aged over 21 to £10.50 an hour, up from a current £8.21, applicable to those aged at least 25.