Welsh Labour Leader and First Minister Mark Drakeford has refused to commit to a £10 an hour minimum wage for all care workers in Wales.

Mr Drakeford was challenged to give carers a pay rise by Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price during today’s First Minister’s Questions.

Last year, the Plaid Cymru Leader outlined his party’s plans to pay carers a minimum of £10 an hour.

Last week, the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Angela Rayner, also called for the Government in England to commit to a care worker’s minimum wage of £10 an hour.

Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price said the First Minister’s refusal to match his party colleague’s commitment was “disappointing”.

According to Resolution Foundation, 56% of care workers in Wales receive less than the Real Living Wage.

Mr Price said that giving care workers a pay rise would be a “priority” for a Plaid Cymru Government adding it was time for Wales to have a government “that will really care for our carers”.   

The Scottish Government committed last year to ensure all care workers received a real living wage.

Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price MS said,

“Our care workers were underpaid and undervalued long before the Covid pandemic struck.

“It is disappointing that the First Minister refuses to match the commitment outlined by his party’s Deputy Leader just last week of £10 minimum wage for carers – even here in government where he has the power to make a difference to tens of thousands of workers’ lives and the people that depend upon them.

“The unions are calling for a real living wage for all care workers, the care sector is demanding this, the Bevan Foundation has called for it.  For a Plaid Cymru Government it would be a priority. 

“A Plaid Cymru Government would start off by paying every care worker a minimum wage of £10 an hour. But we will go even further - working towards bringing care sector pay in line with NHS salaries, with care workers playing an integral part in the new National Health and Care Service that a Plaid Cymru government would create.

“It’s time for Wales to have a government that will really care for our carers – fair play through fair pay.