Shopworkers union USDAW has called on the government to introduce a legally binding minimum wage for 16 to 17- year-olds. A spokesman said it should be around £3.50. Under 18s are not covered by existing wage legislation, and can "quite legally be paid 50p an hour," said general secretary Bill Connor. "Sadly, the kids most likely to be exploited are the mentally and physically handicapped or those from the ethnic minority communities." The adult minimum wage will rise in October from £3.70 an hour to £4.10, while the development rate' for 18-21s will go up from £3.20 to £3.50. Usdaw wants a flat rate minimum wage for all employees aged 18 or over. {{NEWS }}