Businesses that sign up to paying the living wage will be given a 12 month tax break worth up to £1,000 for each worker under plans unveiled by Ed Miliband. The living wage is £8.55 in London and £7.45 in the rest of the UK.
RMT general secretary Bob Crow has described today's living wage announcement by Labour as a "cop out"
Under the plans businesses that sign up to paying the living wagewill be given a 12 month tax break for each worker.
Mr Crow added: "Poverty pay should not be an option and the only solution is to raise the statutory minimum wage to the current living wage rate, making it legally enforceable and slamming the door on cheapskate employers looking for an opt out.
"Offering employers a tax break to try and drag them into paying a decent rate just smacks of corporate welfare and will stick in the throats of millions of people who have had their benefits cuts and frozen."
If employers agree to move to paying the living wage to their workforce, we will provide them with an incentive, offering them in the first year the money that government would receive in higher tax revenues.
The result: working people get higher wages, employers get support to help to make the transition to a living wage, government cuts the cost of social security for the long term.
And we make a clear statement about the future of our country and our economy: Under a Labour government: work will pay. And that together, we can tackle the cost of living crisis.