City economy would be boosted by Living Wage

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​By paying employees the Living Wage entire economy would benefit 

3rd September 2018 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

If a quarter of Glasgow’s lowest paid workers were paid the real Living Wage the local economy could benefit by £49 million, a new report reveals.

In a new study commissioned by the Living Wage Foundation, the Smith Institute found that if a quarter of all low paid workers in the Glasgow City Region were given a pay rise to the real Living Wage, currently £8.75, 37,500 people would see an average annual pay rise of £1,180, or an extra £23 a week.  

Currently 150,000 people working in the Glasgow city region are paid below the real Living Wage.

About 270 Glasgow-based employers are accredited as Living Wage employers.  

Peter Kelly, director of the Poverty Alliance who host Living Wage Scotland, said: “This report makes clear the tangible benefits to the economy when more employers commit to paying all of their workers the real Living Wage of £8.75.

“Since Living Wage Scotland launched in 2014, we have been working closely with employers of all sizes from a range of sectors across Scotland to understand the business benefits that come from paying the real Living Wage, and the difference that this can make to workers and their families. This new report is evidence of what we already suspected- that paying the real Living Wage is not only good for the individual and good for business, but also for the wider economy.

“With more than one third of the Scottish workers paid less than the real Living Wage living in the Glasgow cityregion, there is much more that needs to be done by local authorities and employers. Getting more workers paid the real Living Wage will not only benefit them and their families, but will make for a healthier local economy which will benefit us all. The evidence is here in this report, now it’s time for action.”

The report highlights the role that leading local public and private sector employers such as universities, hospitals, football clubs and city airports can play in providing leadership on the Living Wage.

It calls on local authorities to work with these key institutions to drive Living Wage take up in their towns, cities and regions.   

Minister for business Jamie Hepburn said: “The Scottish Government has long championed fair work and paying the real Living Wage is part of that: it ensures not only that workers are treated more fairly and they get more money in their pockets - it benefits our economy too. We firmly believe that all workers should get a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work.

"We are continuing to support the Poverty Alliance to deliver Living Wage Scotland and are providing them with  £340,000 in 2018-19 to uplift a further 7,500 workers across Scotland to at least the Living Wage rate, giving particular attention to low paid sectors. This report confirms that fair work practices are good for workers, good for business and for the economy.”