Tory minister suggests disabled people "not worth the minimum wage"

A government minister has come under fire after a leaked recording emerged in which he appeared to suggest that disabled people could work for less than the minimum wage as some are "not worth" the full amount.

A tape which is said to be from a fringe meeting at the Conservative Party conference, in which Department for Work and Pensions minister Lord Freud was responding to a question from a Tory councillor, was passed on to the Politics Home website:


Here is a transcript of the recording in which the speaker appears to suggest that some disabled people could work for as little as £2 an hour:

You make a really good point about the disabled. Now I had not thought through, and we have not got a system for, you know, kind of going below the minimum wage.

But we do have. You know, universal credit is really useful for people with the fluctuating conditions who can do some work - go up and down - because they can earn and get and get, you know, bolstered through universal credit, and they can move that amount up and down.

Now, there is a small... there is a group, and I know exactly who you mean, where actually as you say they’re not worth the full wage and actually I’m going to go and think about that particular issue, whether there is something we can do nationally, and without distorting the whole thing, which actually if someone wants to work for £2 an hour, and it’s working can we actually.

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