Pay gap between young and older workers more than doubles in 20 years


There’s been articles in the mass media over the past few weeks, which report that far too many young people are trapped in low paid jobs with poor prospects.

The Mirror reports the following:

“The pay gap between young and older workers has increased by more than half in the past 20 years, new research reveals.

A study by the TUC (the Trades Union Congress) found that the difference in pay between over 30s and younger employees was £1.51 an hour in 1998, rising to £2.81 an hour last year.”

The TUC’s report shows the challenges young people face, including low pay, job insecurity and lack of progression.

The report is entitled Stuck at the Start and it polled 1,500 young employees. You can read the key findings and recommendation on the TUC’s website here

The TUC says:

“Young people are getting a raw deal at work. Low pay, few opportunities to progress and a feeling that nothing will change often dominate their working lives. But this is through no fault of their own. Many of the barriers facing young workers are structural and outside of their control.”

The report identifies five issues that young workers face in getting ahead at work.

  1. Young workers are disproportionately affected by wage stagnation
  2. Young workers are concentrated in low-paying jobs
  3. Young workers do not have access to the skills development to get on at work
  4. Young workers are especially vulnerable to insecure work
  5. Young workers have no voice at work

Some of the most frightening statistics, reported by inews are as follows:

  • The number of those under 30 who are working in low-paid industries such as private social care (up 104%) and hotels and restaurants (up 80%) has shot up since 1998
  • Only 3 in 10 respondents said that they felt their current job makes the most of their qualifications or experience
  • 38% said that they had not had any training opportunities in the past year
  • 1 in 5 (21%) said that they had worked a zero-hours contract over the past five year
  • Nearly a quarter if respondents said that they struggled to pay even basic living costs
  • 1 in 5 admitted that they had skipped meals to make ends meet in the past year