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Living Wage Week

This week is Living Wage Week and the Living Wage Foundation announced that the UK Voluntary Living Wage is to rise to £8.75 per hour for those working outside of London.

The Voluntary Living Wage is independently calculated from research into what people in the UK need to get by. Unlike the Government’s re-branding of the National Minimum Wage to the National Living Wage – which is £7.50 per hour – it reflects the real cost of living taking into account things like accommodation, travel and a reasonable diet.

The rise in the Voluntary Living Wage will mean a pay rise for thousands of workers in our city. It is great that more and more employers in our city have chosen to go beyond the Government’s legal minimum and pay a real Living Wage.

When work pays we all benefit – living standards rise, inequality reduces and productivity increases.

But too many people in Northfield are still not paid a salary that is enough to get by.

Northfield has historically been one of ‘Living Wage Blackspots’ when it comes to the amount of people earning below the living wage. Recent research by the Living Wage Foundation found that in Northfield almost 30% of workers, 9000 in total, still get paid less than last year’s Voluntary Living Wage of £8.45 per hour. In the West Midlands a quarter of workers still earn below this wage and across the country 5.5 million are still paid less than the real Living Wage.

It is a scandal that almost a third of working people in Northfield are not still being paid enough to provide properly for themselves and their families. These figures reinforce that in-work poverty is real and it means far too many working people in this area are struggling to make ends meet.

You can find out more about living wage week here – https://www.livingwage.org.uk/living-wage-week