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Youth minimum wage increase divides ruling coalition
Parliament can soon expect a letter stating that more time for consultation on increasing the youth minimum wage is needed, because the topic has the ruling coalition divided. The PvdA is in favor of bringing the youth minimum wage closer to the normal minimum wage. The VVD fears that doing so will result in a loss of jobs. This is according to sources on the Binnenhof, Trouw reports. The minimum wage for a 18 or 19 year old is currently 3.96 euros per hour and 690 euros gross per month. That increases to 5.30 euros per hour and 930 euros per month once they reach the age of 20. From 23 years of age the normal minimum wage of 8.70 euros per hour and 1,508 euros per month applies. In September the Tweede Kamer, lower house of parliament, asked Minister Lodewijk Asscher of Social Affairs and Employment to come up with a proposal to increase the wages for young people. Since then the PvdA Minister received a negative advice from the Central Planning Office which states that young people will no longer be able to find work if employers are forced to raise their wages. Union organization FNV Young & United has been protesting for higher wages for months. They believe the youth minimum wage is not enough to live on and that the same work should get the same pay, no matter your age. Something a majority in the Tweede Kamer, including the PvdA, agrees with. The union and Bijenkorf recently reached a collective bargaining agreement in which young workers will be paid regular wages.