Base code clause 5: Living wages are paid

5.1 Wages and benefits paid for a standard working week meet, at a minimum, national legal standards or industry benchmark standards, whichever is higher. In any event wages should always be enough to meet basic needs and to provide some discretionary income.

5.2 All workers shall be provided with written and understandable Information about their employment conditions in respect to wages before they enter employment and about the particulars of their wages for the pay period concerned each time that they are paid.

5.3 Deductions from wages as a disciplinary measure shall not be permitted nor shall any deductions from wages not provided for by national law be permitted without the expressed permission of the worker concerned. All disciplinary measures should be recorded.

Relevant ILO conventions

C131 - Minimum Wage Fixing Convention, 1970

Under this Convention, states are required to establish a system of minimum wages, which has the force of law. In determining the level of minimum wages states must consider the needs of workers and their families, the general level of wages in the country, the cost of living, social security benefits, and the relative living standards of other social groups. Economic factors must also be considered, including the requirements of economic development, levels of productivity and the desirability of attaining and maintaining a high level of employment.

C95 - Protection of Wages Convention, 1949

This Convention imposes a wide range of requirements aimed at ensuring that workers are paid their wages regularly and in legal tender, rather than in the form of promissory notes, vouchers or coupons. Wages must be paid directly to the worker concerned and deductions from wages are permitted only where prescribed by law or collective agreement.

In cases of bankruptcy, workers must be treated as privileged creditors in respect of unpaid wages - subject to limits set by law.