YWT respond to Channel 4 'Dispatches'

Monday 23 January 2017

Commenting on today’s Channel 4 ‘Dispatches’ programme, which claims that some UK-based factory workers on clothing production lines are being paid less than half the legal minimum wage, Young Women’s Trust chief executive Dr Carole Easton OBE said:

YWT“Young Women’s Trust research has found that a quarter of young women and a fifth of young men have been paid less than the National Minimum Wage. Low pay and job insecurity means young people are struggling and are putting their lives on hold.

“Companies that are exploiting people by illegally paying less than the minimum wage must be held to account. Alongside greater enforcement, it should be made easier for young people, many of whom are worried about their job security, to report employers who are breaking the law.

“Young Women’s Trust is also calling for the Government to extend the National Living Wage to under-25s. Young people should be paid the same amount for the same work as their older counterparts.”


Notes to editor:

  1. Channel 4’s ‘Dispatches’ programme will air at 8pm on Monday, 23 January 2017. The documentary claims that its undercover reporter was paid less than the minimum wage for work at factories producing and packaging garments for popular clothes shops.
  2. Young Women’s Trust commissioned Populus Data Solutions to undertake a survey of young people between 27 June and 13 July 2016. A representative sample of 4,014 18-30 year olds in Great Britain, from the Populus Live Online Panel, were surveyed. Young Women’s Trust’s survey found that:
    1. one in five 18-30 year olds reported having been paid less than the minimum wage, increasing to one in four among young women specifically;
    2. 30 per cent of young people had been offered a zero hours contract (32 per cent of young women, 28 per cent of young men).
    3. 39 per cent of young women said it was a struggle to make their cash last to the end of the month and 27 per cent of young women said they are in debt all of the time;
    4. more than half of young people said they feel worried for the future (55 per cent of young women, 47 per cent of young men);
  3. The report based on Young Women’s Trust’s annual survey, No Country For Young Women, can be found here
  4. Young Women’s Trust supports and represents women aged 16-30 struggling to live on low or no pay in England and Wales and who are at risk of being trapped in poverty.
  5. For more information, contact Bex Bailey at bex.bailey@youngwomenstrust.org or 07963018281.