COUNCIL TO PAY LONDON LIVING WAGE FOR ALL STAFF – Contractors to be asked to do the same ….AS MP BACKS COMMONS BILL TO RAISE VALUE OF MINIMUM LIVING WAGE
CROYDON COUNCIL are set to pay the London living wage to all employees – with firms and contractors the council employ being asked to do the same.
The borough’s largest employer says this will mean every council employee will be paid a minimum rate of £8.80 per hour, or £16,518 annually for a 36 hour week.
“This is £2.49 per hour more than the national minimum wage and is calculated as the amount people need to cover the basic costs of living” says a council spokesman.
“Rising costs and falling wages have meant that over recent years many people who are working full time, particularly in London, have found themselves trying to get by on incomes below the official poverty line.
“Wherever possible the council will make it a requirement of its contractors that their staff are paid at least the living wage.
“Negotiations will take place with existing firms who deliver services on behalf of the council and in future any new arrangements will have the living wage principle built into contract terms.
“Community schools will also be encouraged to sign up to the scheme” he added.
Croydon council leader Cllr Tony Newman said: “As a council we’re committed to delivering on our election manifesto pledges, and this is a key one of those.
“The people of Croydon deserve a fair wage for a day’s work – they need to be paid enough to live comfortably in the nation’s capital where they contribute their time and skills to growing the nation’s economy.
“Right now there is only a handful of our directly-employed council staff who are on an hourly rate below £8.80. “They will soon see more money in their pay-packets, and our big aim is that many other local employers follow suite, no matter what size the company.
“The Living Wage doesn’t just make it possible for more people to free themselves from dependency on benefits, it also makes great business sense by reducing staff turnover and increasing productivity.
“We are determined to root out inequality. “This is the right thing to do.”
The London Living wage is a voluntary initiative and means workers get substantially more than the legal minimum of £6.31, which also only applies to people over 21, says Croydon.
“Calculations which have been used to establish this rate of pay include analysis done by the Living Wage Foundation, an organisation backed by some of the country’s largest employers and charities.
“The formula takes into account basic living costs, taxes, benefits, and the contents of each new budget report.
“The council aims to achieve accredited London Living wage status once the plans have been implemented.” (Source: Croydon council press release)
….AS MP BACKS COMMONS BILL TO RAISE VALUE OF MINIMUM LIVING WAGE
Croydon North MP Steve Reed has backed a private member’s bill to raise the value of the National Minimum Wage.
The new law, proposed by Dan Jarvis (Lab, Barnsley Central) aims to reduce the number of hard-working people who are forced to live in poverty because of low pay, says a post on the MP’s website.
“The number of working people claiming benefits in Croydon has soared under the Tory-led Government from 1000 four years ago to over 12,000 today because of the Government’s failure to tackle low pay and job insecurity.
“The new law would require the government to introduce a target to increase the minimum wage over the course of a parliament as part of a national mission to tackle low pay.
“It would also give the Low Pay Commission new powers to raise productivity and tackle low pay in different sectors of the economy.
“The proposal will be debated in the House of Commons in November. “If passed, the new law would ensure the minimum wage increases faster than average earnings, helping to lift the lowest paid out of poverty.
“Labour believe it’s important that work always pays more than being on benefits, and that no one who works for a living should be left to live in poverty.”
Speaking about the proposal in Parliament, Steve Reed MP said: “The national minimum wage was one of the last Labour government’s greatest achievements and ended the scandal of people going to work for as little as £1 an hour.
“But now over five million people are stuck in low-paid jobs and the value of the national minimum wage has been going backwards for several years.
“People in Croydon are suffering from a cost-of-living crisis thanks to this Tory-led Government. “I’m determined that no one who works hard for a living should be left struggling to make ends meet.”