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Low Pay

Volume 169: debated on Tuesday 13 March 1990

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17.

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment when he last met representatives from the Low Pay Unit; and what was discussed.

My right hon. and learned Friend has not met representatives from the Low Pay Unit.

Does the Minister accept that those who are on low pay, many of whom are in the old industrial valleys and rural areas of Wales, are the very people who will be hardest hit by the poll tax? Those families will get no benefit from rebates. Will the hon. Gentleman take up this matter with the Chancellor of the Exchequer to ensure that, at the very least, the position of those people is safeguarded in that they will not be brought within the tax rate by the non-indexation of tax allowances?

As the hon. Gentleman says, there is a community charge rebate system. Some 7ยท5 million people will benefit from a rebate of up to 80 per cent. Obviously, everyone, including the Government, will watch with great interest how the scheme develops in practice.