Jersey's government pushes back plans for October minimum wage rise

A £10 note and a 50p coin
Jersey's government will now increase the minimum wage to £10.50 per hour from November. Credit: ITV Channel TV

Jersey's government has changed its plans to increase the island's minimum wage.

Last week, it announced a rise to £10 per hour from October, followed by a further rise in January.

But those plans have now been scrapped in favour of a single, bigger increase - to £10.50 per hour from November instead.

The government says having one increase instead of two means "businesses will not need to deal with an unnecessary administrative burden to close to October's payroll."

It also says that islanders on the minimum wage will receive the full rise sooner so they will have "more money in their pockets before Christmas".

The increase will be introduced on Tuesday 1 November, representing a 14% rise compared to the current minimum wage. Trainee rates will also rise by 14%.

Plans to increase offset rates (allowances which can be deducted from an employee's pay when accommodation and/or food is provided) by 26% from 1 January 2021 has been put forward for States approval.

The Chief Minister, Deputy Kristina Moore, says it "will give hard-working families the support they need during the cost-of-living crisis."

Economic Development, Tourism, Sport and Culture Minister, Deputy Kirsten Morel, said: " I understand the pressures the increase to £10.50 places on businesses and other organisations but there has been a need to balance the needs of employers with the need to get more money into people's pockets in order to help with rising costs.

"I am pleased to see a substantial increase in the accommodation offset rates from January which will help employers of seasonal workers, and I will work with businesses and our agricultural sector, in particular, to support them through this period."

Marcus Calvani, the recently appointed co-CEO of the Jersey Hospitality Association, has welcomed the change:

"[The] original plan to increase the minimum wage to £10 per hour on 1st October would not have given businesses enough time to make the necessary changes to payroll and work out the impact on their costs. Having consulted with the Chamber of Commerce, we were concerned to learn that a further increase to £10.80 had been planned by the Minister for 1st January 2023."

"Hospitality is often criticised for paying low wages when actually the opposite is true. Staff earn good hourly rates and receive benefits, such as tips and meals, that make the financial package our industry pays more attractive than many others. We are living through a time when prices are rising everywhere and if businesses are facing higher costs, then that will be reflected in the prices for all goods and services that consumers will have to pay."