HC Deb 19 May 1999 vol 331 c347W
Mr. Redwood

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment he has made of the need for amendments to the(a) national minimum wage and (b) working time legislation on the basis of experience since their implementation. [84342]

Mr. Byers

The national minimum wage has been in operation for almost seven weeks and so it is too early to make a considered assessment of whether any major amendments might be required in the light of experience. However, the Government propose to make an amendment to the National Minimum Wage Act 1998 to exempt members of Intentional Communities (religious and spiritual residential organisations) following the Low Pay Commission's report. The amendment will be introduced through the Employment Relations Bill which is currently before Parliament. Adjustments to implementation procedures may also be made as necessary.

With regard to the Working Time Directive, we will issue guidance that will address the questions that have been most frequently asked since the regulations came into force.