Hackney business pledge to pay London Living Wage

Mayor of Hackney Philip Glanville and Councillor Carole Williams. Pic: Hackney Council

Around 150 Hackney businesses have signed up to pay their employees the London Living Wage, which currently stands at £11.05 per hour.

The announcement was made during Living Wage Week, which runs from November 15-21. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Living Wage Movement.

Hackney Foodbank, Hackney CVS, and Growing Communities, among many others, are part of Hackney’s “accredited businesses,” which are committing to pay the increased wage. Employees of these businesses are expected to receive their raise by May 2022 at the latest.

Real Living Wage is calculated independently by the Living Wage Foundation, a charity championing better pay for employees.

The rate is based on the rise of living costs, including fuel, energy, food and rent. The London and UK Real Living Wages are higher than the statutory National Living Wage, currently at £8.91 for workers 23 years old and above.

In London, the wage will rise to £11.05, increasing by 20p. Across the country it will stand at £9.90, an increase of 40p.

Hackney Council, a London Living Wage employer, reported an almost 15% increase in the number of businesses volunteering to adopt the new pay measure this year.

Living Wage UK infographic. Pic: Hackney Council

Sue Bell of Hackney Foodbank, another London Living Wage employer in the borough, said in a statement that the end of the £20 uplift to Universal Credit, the furlough scheme, and the return of eviction notices have “created a perfect storm of challenges for people in crisis or trapped in poverty whom Hackney Foodbank aim to support”. 

Councillor Carole Williams, Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and Human Resources, welcomed both the pay increase and the number of employers volunteering to pay it.

She said: “Accredited businesses can demonstrate they are an employer of choice, attracting high quality staff and retaining good staff members. It is crucial that we continue to play our part in championing London Living Wage employers who can help raise the standard of living in Hackney.”

Research done by the Living Wage Foundation shows that a full-time worker in London earning the new Real Living Wage would be paid £4,173 more a year than a worker on the National Living Wage.

The charity’s director Katherine Chapman said: “With living costs rising so rapidly, today’s new Living Wage rates will provide hundreds of thousands of workers and their families with greater security and stability.”

Hackney’s Living Wage Businesses join around 9000 employers in the country committing to pay their workers the voluntary wage.

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