Tuesday, November 11, 2014

They Call It Living

With a great flourish the government announced recently that the new living wage rates will be raised from £8.80 per hour in London and £7.65 elsewhere, but what was less publicised was that more than a fifth of UK workers earn less than the living wage, with bar staff and shop assistants among the most likely to live "hand to mouth" because of low pay, according to a recent report.  'Published to mark living wage week, the research also finds that younger workers, women and part-timers are more likely to be paid less than the living wage, a voluntary threshold calculated to provide a basic but decent standard of living. The report by consultancy firm KPMG adds to evidence of low pay remaining prevalent in Britain, despite the economic recovery. The proportion of employees on less than the living wage is now 22%, up from 21% last year, the study found. In real terms, that was a rise of 147,000 people to 5.28 million.' (Guardian, 3 November) Whoopee the "living" wage has been raised from £7.65 to £7.85! RD

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