BOLTON at Home got Living Wage Week off to a good start by becoming an officially recognised Living Wage employer.
The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, presented the accreditation to Bolton at Home’s executive director of customer and place, Noel Sharpe, this week at Manchester’s National Football Museum (main picture).
“In-work poverty has grown in recent years and three million children are growing up beneath the breadline,” Burnham said. “Life has become too hard for more people, who can be a few days away from rough sleeping and homelessness at any time.
“We want to make all of Greater Manchester a real living wage area. For employers, it’s also about building strong, productive businesses that benefit from happier staff. More employers in our region are signing-up and we need to build on this momentum.
“Living Wage Week sends the message out loud and clear that it is the right thing for employers to do.”
Bolton at Home has almost 1,000 employees and voluntarily pays the ‘real Living Wage’. This is a minimum of £8.75 per hour and is set annually by the Living Wage Foundation.
Living Wage accredited organisations are those that also work towards using partners and suppliers that pay the real Living Wage. Living Wage Week kicked off on Monday 5 November and runs until Saturday 10 November.
The real Living Wage is different to the Government’s statutory National Living Wage of £7.83 for over-25s and the National Minimum Wage of £7.38 for under-25s. London has its own Living Wage rate of £10.20 to reflect higher living costs in the capital.
Real Living Wage rates are higher and independently-calculated based on what people need to get by. This calculation is based on a basket of household goods and services.
A new real Living Wage rate of £9.00 an hour (£10.55 an hour in London) for the next financial year was set by the Living Wage Foundation at the event in Manchester. Living Wage employers are expected to have started paying staff the new rate by May 1, 2019.
“Paying the Living Wage provides a clear benefit to society, which is why we’ve moved towards becoming a true Living Wage employer,” said Bolton at Homes’ group chief executive, Jon Lord.
“This accreditation shows we’re committed to paying our employees fairly and helping them meet the real cost of living. Ultimately, being paid a fair wage means people get a better work-life balance, have the opportunity to save money, and don’t have to worry about affording the basics.”
The real Living Wage is voluntarily paid by over 4,500 UK businesses. Over 150,000 employees have received a pay rise as a result of the Living Wage campaign.