The Living Wage is defined as, “The level to achieve an adequate level of warmth and shelter, a healthy palatable diet, social integration and avoidance of chronic stress for them and their dependants."
It is calculated annually and independently by the Centre for Research in Social Policy at Loughborough university.
The rate announced on 4 November 2013 is £7.65 per hour (£8.80 per hour in London).
Newcastle City Branch has challenged the City Council to become an accredited Living Wage employer. This means that the Council would increase wages of the lowest paid in the organisation in line with the increases of the Foundation Living Wage each November.
In addition we have challenged the council to make provision within its procurement policy to ensure that the contractors and businesses the council employs, include a provision that they also pay the Foundation Living Wage.
The Foundation Living Wage is a voluntary hourly rate set independently and updated annually and is calculated according to the basic cost of living in the UK. The current UK Living Wage is £8.25 an hour while the current London Living Wage is £9.40 an hour. Employers choose to pay the Living Wage on a voluntary basis.
In July 2015 the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that the UK Government would introduce a compulsory ‘national living wage’. This new government rate is a minimum wage premium rate for staff aged 25 and older and was introduced from April 2016 at the rate of £7.20 per hour. The rate is separate to the Living Wage rate calculated by the Living Wage Foundation, with the government rate based on median earnings while the Living Wage Foundation rate is calculated according to the cost of living.
The council decided to implement a Newcastle Living Wage in November 2012 following a report by an independent Living Wage Advisory Panel, the rate was £7.20 / hr (the national minimum wage was £6.19 at the time and the foundation living wage was £7.45). This was increased to £7.55 from April 2014 (the national minimum wage was £6.50 at the time and the foundation living wage was £7.65), and to £7.75 / hr from April 2015 (the national minimum wage was £6.70 at the time and the foundation living wage was £7.85); with a stated commitment to “reviewing the level of the Newcastle Living Wage on an annual basis with the aim of matching it to the level of the National Living Wage rate by 2016”.
The current Newcastle Living Wage rate is £7.75 / hr and the National Living Wage is £7.20 / hr.
The idea behind a living wage is very simple, that a person should be paid enough to live decently and to adequately provide for their family. At its heart is an ethical argument for preventing in-work poverty and ensuring workers are not exploited through low wages.
UNISON reasserts the ‘ultimate goal’ for UK minimum wage policy, in its submission to the Low Pay Commission.
Under the current national minimum wage system, UNISON’s recommendations include:
Public and private sector employers are ignoring the lower statutory National Living Wage of £7.20 an hour introduced by the government for workers aged 25 and over and moving to pay staff the higher voluntary Living Wage.
Liverpool John Moores University has been accredited as a Living Wage employer by the Living Wage Foundation. The university, which employs around 2,500 members of staff, has committed to paying permanent employees and third-party contractors at least the Living Wage rate of £8.25 an hour.
EDF Energy has also been accredited as a Living Wage employer. In addition, the firm will work to encourage all of its suppliers to pay the Living Wage to those that regularly work for the company. The unions at EDF — Unite, UNISON, GMB and Prospect — have supported the move.
And from 1 April, the Swedish-owned retailer IKEA UK has introduced the Living Wage Foundation’s voluntary Living Wage rate of £9.40 in London and £8.25 an hour elsewhere in the UK. Around 1,200 IKEA UK team leaders will get a proportionate pay increase.
The UK Living Wage rate has been set at £7.85 per hour, an increase of 2.6% on the 2013 rate and 21% higher than the national minimum wage of £6.50 per hour; improving the take home pay of 35,000 low-paid workers across the country who are employed by over 1,000 Living Wage accredited organisations.
Newcastle City Council has said it will increase the amount it pays to its lowest paid workers by setting a Newcastle Living Wage of £7.75 an hour - up 20p from the current rate of £7.55.
As part of Living Wage week the council repeated its aim to match the Newcastle Living Wage to the national Living Wage over the next two years.
The London Living Wage rate has been set at £9.15.
The minimum wage in Britain is £6.31 an hour, while in New York it’s $8 an hour, or £4.93. So who do you think’s better paid: a hotel cleaner in London or one in Manhattan?
At the heart of this question lies one of the most important issues in economics and politics today – who gets paid what, and how. And the answer: New York City wins.
A cleaner on London’s Park Lane will almost certainly be on or around the minimum wage, say £6.31 for each hour. Her counterpart (because, let’s face it, it’s almost always women doing this physically punishing work) on New York’s Park Avenue is likely to be on nearly three times as much: an agreed hourly rate of $28.50, or £17.66.
So, what makes the difference between the hotel staff in London and New York? In our capital, between 2% and 4% of all hotel workers are in a trade union. Over the Atlantic, about 70% of New York hotel staff are unionised.
The summer newsletter 'Campaigning for a Living Wage' reports on the Living Wage debates at UNISON's national conferences, the final report of the Living Wage Commission and the strike scheduled for 10 July.
UNISON Northern region is committed to ensuring all workers receive a wage which is not only representative of the job they do but also that which is enough and enables the worker to have a decent standard of living.
We use the independently, nationally set Living Wage rate as calculated and defined by the Centre for Research in Social Policy, Loughborough University as a base line and we are actively promoting and campaigning for the rate to be adopted by employers as their minimum rate of pay. A number of employers in the northern region have recognised the benefit not only to their employees but also to themselves for becoming an accredited Living wage employer, sadly the north east has some of the highest numbers of people who are paid below the Living Wage rate and over 5 million people nationally are paid below the Living Wage.
The Living Wage Commission’s first report, 'Working for Poverty', warns that the economic recovery could fail one in five people in paid employment.
The report, which provides a detailed analysis of the rise of low pay and working poverty, shows that spiralling living costs and stagnating wages at the bottom create a “double squeeze” on the lowest paid. The five million people in low paid employment have the smallest budget elasticity, and are therefore hit hardest by rising living costs.
'Working for Poverty' outlines the changing nature of low pay and poverty in the UK:
Low paid workers are increasingly turning to support to get by, the report finds. This includes a growing dependence on debt, food banks and in-work benefits.
Dr John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York and Chair of the Living Wage Commission, said today:
“The idea of making work pay is an empty slogan to millions of people who are hard pressed and working hard; but find themselves in a downward social spiral. They are often in two or three jobs just to make ends meet. Meanwhile the UK taxpayer picks up the bill in tax credits, in-work benefits and decreased demand in the economy.
“With the economy showing signs of recovery, employers that can pay a Living Wage must do so. They should choose between continuing to make gains on the back of poverty wages, or doing the right thing and paying a fair wage for a hard day’s work.”
The Living Wage Commission will release its final report in June 2014. The interim report is available to view here: Working for Poverty
The Laidlaw Schools Trust has agreed to keep the Living Wage for the employees TUPE’d over when Thomas Walling became an academy and stated they would recommend the Living Wage for the other schools in the Trust (Excelsior and Atkinson Road Primary).
Help spread the word by cutting and pasting the facts below into your Twitter newsfeed
4.8 million people, 20% of the working population, earn less than a living wage #livingwage
The taxpayer is subsidising poverty wages to the tune of £3.6bn per year, including £1.1bn in means tested benefits #livingwage
18% of UNISON branches report that an employer claims to be a living wage employer but does not pay it to contracted-out staff #livingwage
60% of the general public support increasing the minimum wage to a living wage, making the living wage the new legal minimum #livingwage
New research commissioned by UNISON from leading economist, Howard Reed has found that an estimated 58,000 new jobs could be created through the introduction of a Living Wage.
The Living Wage pays just enough to provide a decent life for workers and their families. Taxpayers’ should not be forced to subsidise Scrooge employers by picking up the bill for in-work benefits. Opponents of the minimum wage forecast massive job losses when it was brought in, but the opposite was true – it acted as a real stimulus to the economy.”
Fact: The taxpayer is subsidising poverty wages to the tune of £3.6bn per year, including £1.1bn in means tested benefits.
The new Living Wage rate has been announced It has increased to £7.65 per hour and to £8.80 per hour in London.
This means that even more low paid workers are falling way below the Living Wage rate.
This is Living Wage week (3-9 November) and there are events around the region to support and promote the campaign.
UNISON Northern Region has put together a short YouTube video about the Living Wage and has also launched a weekly Living Wage newsletter.
The following are North East accredited Living Wage employers:
*Aquila Way, *Children North East, *Consult and Design International, *Fabrick Housing Group, *Four Housing, *Involve North East, *Livin, *Riverside Community Health Project, *Scotswood Natural Community Garden, *Vela Group, *Vocare Group, *Waddington Street Centre.
New courses for members and stewards.
Inflation leaps to 3.2%
More regulation of gig economy needed
Appalling risk of suicides in construction
Fat cats — the great pay divide
Racist abuse after Brexit vote
Lack of diversity at top in Wales
Papers for the meeting on Monday 3 April.
Meeting on Tuesday 28 March 2017 at 4.30pm.
Nottinghamshire Police have taken the bold step to identify misogyny as a hate crime and Northern UNSION are keen for this to be replicated in our region. The aim of the event is to identify how we can move the issue forward across the region with all three Police and Crime Commissioners.
Swings and scooters of inflation basket
No real improvement in weekly earnings
Cosmetic improvement with Living Wage
Zero-hours contracts at record high
Unemployment falls below 1.6 million
Agenda and annual report.
Economic forecasts in Hammond's Budget
Mixed fortunes in ethnic women's pay gap data
Company merger and acquisitions in 2016
Numbers on zero-hours contracts at a high
GMB take on DX delivery firm
Former chancellor's nice big earner
Charter to stop violence at work
Saturday 25 March. Hear grassroots, union and guest speakers and watch the Reel News film showing the Durham Teaching Assistants’ story.
Saturday 25 March, to plan UNISON LGBT activities for the year ahead.
A joint training session for trade union and community activists on how to organise to defeat the politics of division. 18 March 2017.
March calendar of events and activities.
Trade Union Act regs come into force
Gender pension gap leaves women short
Violence at work — the nasty truth
Bookseller's £7m salary
Money purchase pension are norm
British Gas denied appeal in Lock case
Government fails in ethnicity review
Papers for the meeting on Monday 6 March.
Papers for the retired members' meeting on 17 March.
Winners in February.
Morning seminar and afternoon remembrance service in Hartlepool on Friday 28 April 2017. There is also an Eve of WMD ‘Gig’ on Thursday 27 April.
Government green paper on pensions
A 'Stern diet' for fat cat directors' pay
Employers — don't miss out on talent
Argos repays £2.4 million to 37,000 staff
Economic growth revised upwards
Work fears of disabled people revealed
Migrants have helped make Britain. It’s time to celebrate us
NHS at breaking point, according to British Medical Association
Councils prepare to cut essential services to fund adult social care
London transport spending equivalent to £1,500 more per head than North East
Minimum wage cheats named and shamed
Inflation hits three-year high
Unemployment at 11-year low
Inflation erodes growth in weekly earnings
Migrants are always the scapegoats. But now they’re taking on Ukip’s lies
I, Daniel Blake is a realistic depiction of life on benefits. Isn’t it?
English social care system for elderly facing 'complete collapse'
North East peers want law to make Government investigate impact of Brexit on region
North East recruitment drive revealed as jobless total in region rises
UK employment growth driven by foreign nationals, figures show
The NHS needs a rethink. Its priorities no longer make sense
Top Labour politicians come to 'UKIP area' Sunderland for Brexit debates and festival
Rothbury Community Hospital inpatient ward closure public meeting this week
Shopping will cost you more as prices rise, but is Brexit to blame?
Campaigners calling for u-turn over Post Office move
UK labour shortages reported as EU worker numbers fall
Britons living in the EU face Brexit backlash, leaked paper warns
Then the Daily Mail came for Gary Lineker, and we said: ‘Enough!’
Brexit survey revealed: What you would do if given second shot at EU referendum
Booming gig economy costs £4bn in lost tax and benefit payouts, says TUC
There will be a shameful betrayal of the Brexit low-paid
Welcome to the new dark ages, where only the wealthy can retire
NHS 'pays £7.5m a year for 20 most expensive agency doctors'
Drive to bring health and social care together is a well-intentioned mess
Sunderland, 19/20 May 2017.
Sign Language (BSL) Introduction, 2 March 2017
Dementia Workshop, 30 March 2017
Regional Education Calendar 2017
A&E in England had worst delays ever in January, leak suggests
Why was Newcastle Council leader Nick Forbes the star of Prime Minister's questions?
Number of patients stuck in hospital 'far higher than NHS data shows'
It's time corporate tax dodgers started losing lucrative council contracts
More council housing needed in the North East - government report reveals
Council tax, youth funding and bins: 6 things to look out for from Sunderland budget meeting
TyneMet and South Tyneside colleges merger: What it means for jobs, campuses and its new name?
Review of tribunal fees finally published
Plan to tackle abusive hiring practices
Insecure work on rise
Twenty eight directors share £68.37 million
A list of affiliations and donations that the branch committee has approved since January 2015.
UK faces return to inequality of Thatcher years, says report
NHS ID scheme could deter eligible patients, say MPs
Councils may cut social care provision due to underfunding, LGA says
Nursery schools: ‘What society gives children less chance than their parents?’
Council tax rise planned for Northumberland residents as authority faces £36m cuts
'Trump can't hack Trebs' - the best signs from Newcastle anti-Trump demonstration
Racism at work
Economy grows but there's a shortfall
Advice on gender pay gap from Acas
Tories offer no solution on discrimination
Eight assaults a day in Welsh schools
A quarterly periodical updating branch reps on employment law.
Winners in January.
Northern Region Young Members AGM
UNISON Northern Region Black Members Forum AGM 2017.
Discounted car insurance for UNISON members.
In Newcastle on Saturday 4 February.
Papers for the meeting on 6 February.
Death by a thousand fire service cuts
Guidance on stress
Modern-day slave traders jailed
Fees let bad bosses get off scot free
Top-ranked inclusive employers 2017
Get tough on pay, says pension funds
Agenda and nomination form for the mmeting on 4 February.
Annual Meeting of the Regional Disabled Members Self Organised Group on Tuesday 31 January 2017.
Mental Health Awareness Workshop on Thursday 16 February.
Wales to ditch parts of 2016 Trade Union Act
Inflation rates at highest since 2014
Retail inflation eating into earnings growth
UK unemployment at nine-year low
Public sector pay poised to fall by thousands in real terms, TUC says
May’s promise on workers’ rights is hollow if she doesn’t get a deal
NHS crisis: the one act of self-sacrifice that could rescue our health service
Politicians have ignored the working class for too long
World's eight richest people have same wealth as poorest 50%
Crisis, what NHS crisis? Theresa May must stop this denial
Welsh government tables bill to overturn Trade Union Act
UNISON have now been allocated two spots on the 16 January to have guided tours around the Anne Frank exhibition.
Courier's tribunal win against CitySprint
TUC warns over Brexit threat to workers' rights
Lame excuses for not paying minimum wage
High street store fined over safety
Manufacturing output edges higher
Child poverty briefing
Winners in December.
Consultation on political fund review: December-January
We are having our first Reading Ahead launch at Welford Learning Zone on 11 January between 10am and 11am.
Book now to secure your place on one of the courses for Reps at Newcastle College starting in January 2017.
UNISON courses in 2017. These courses are free and open to all members unless otherwise stated.
'Precarious pay penalty' of zero-hours staff
Plans for a Universal Basic Income
2017 — economic forecasts for year
'Fat Cat Wednesday' has been and gone
Northern Ireland to reveal political gifts
UK's deficit in trade in goods gets ever worse
UK economic growth revised upwards