Are you a ‘Living Wage Employer’?

What is the Living Wage?

The real Living Wage is the only UK wage rate based on the cost of living. It is voluntarily paid by over 12,500 UK businesses who believe their staff deserve a wage which meets everyday needs – like the weekly shop, or a surprise trip to the dentist.

What is the process of becoming a Living Wage Employer?

To claim to be a Living Wage Employer, there is an accreditation process which is obtained via the Living Wage Foundation.

The employer would need to undertake a number of steps:

Living Wage Employers

For organisations demonstrating their commitment as a responsible employer, Living Wage accreditation is the best place to start.

By paying the real Living Wage, employers are voluntarily taking a stand to ensure their employees can earn a wage which is enough to live on. That basic fairness is at the heart of what the Living Wage campaign is trying to achieve and why great businesses and organisations choose to go further than the government minimum.

As well as it being the right thing to do, there is a growing body of evidence demonstrating the business benefits of becoming a Living Wage Employer.

Accredited employers display the Living Wage Employer Mark to recognise their commitment to the Living Wage. This includes a plaque, merchandise and digital assets to demonstrate that they are a responsible employer to their staff and networks.

Those accredited employer will also be listed on the Living Wage Foundation website and employer map, with their accreditation often being recognised in the media.

So what happened at the parliamentary committee meeting?

Darren Jones MP – Chair
Business and Trade Committee – Tuesday 27 June 2023 – House:Commons Committeep room 8

Following a direct question to each from the committee, they asked whether the organisations called as witnesses were Living Wage Employers?

Witness(es): Gordon Gafa, Commercial Director, Tesco; Kris Comerford, Chief Commercial Officer, Asda; Rhian Bartlett, Food Commercial Director, Sainsbury’s; David Potts, CEO, Morrisons;

Three of the major supermarkets claimed, after being questioned at the Business and Trade Committee on Tuesday 27th June 2023, to be Living Wage Employers. One even stated the ‘real living wage’.

Only Morrisons did not claim to be a Living Wage Employer providing an answer that they pay above the National Living Wage (which is set by government).

Do any of these appear on the accreditation register as Living Wage Employers?

Looking at the register, none of these organisations appear. Maybe that’s a mistake or they are seeking or recently obtained Living Wage Employer status.

Asking the Living Wage Foundation for a comment. The press office in response confirmed the following:

“these supermarkets are not accredited Living Wage Employers”.

Now whether the question could be considered a little tricky or easily misunderstood, or they thought they were being asked about the statutory National Living Wage, we don’t know!

Become a Living Wage Employer

An increasing number are signing up and going through the process of being an official and accredited Living Wage Employer.

If your an employer and not already signed up, why not become a Living Wage Employer.

PAYadvice.UK 4/7/2023

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