Council pledge to introduce Living Wage

Brighton council have pledged to introduce a Living Wage of £7.19 per hour from October. The Living Wage will apply to all council employees.

The move will benefit about 300 workers in the city. The council also plans to set up a Living Wage Commission which will look at the potential to introduce a Living Wage for other employers in the city, including the private and voluntary sectors.

The council is also looking at the possibility of introducing a Living Wage to those employed by companies contracted out by the council. Many of the Brighton’s care workers currently work for companies working under contract for the council, and stand to benefit from such a move.

More information on the council’s Living Wage pledge can be found here:

http://www.brighton-hove.gov.uk/index.cfm?request=c1250814

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Email your Local Election Candidates!

Hello, Who are you voting for?

Thanks for supporting a Living Wage in Brighton & Hove – enough for every worker to provide their family with the essentials for life.

Here’s a quick, simple action to take for a Brighton & Hove Living Wage.

In advance of the Brighton and Hove local elections on May 5th, we’re asking everyone to contact your candidates, and ask if they pledge to support a living wage for all council employees in the city.

Simply send a single message to all of the candidates standing in your ward through the website www.votewise.co.uk (just click on the ward you live in – if you enter your postcode it will tell you which ward that is).

Let your candidates know that you support a living wage – and want the councillors who represent you to work for a living wage for ALL council employees (including contracted catering, cleaning and care staff) in the next budget. You could also ask them what steps they would take to advocate for a Living Wage across other organisations in the city.

Thanks!

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Richard Wilkinson speaking at University of Sussex

Richard Wilkson of The Equality Trust, and co-author of The Spirit Level, talking on the links between inequality and sustainability.
From ‘Limits to Growth Forum’ held at the University of Sussex in March 2011.

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Scrutiny Review Request

The Brighton Living Wage campaign has submitted a request for the Council Scrutiny Committee to look into the feasibility of introducing a Living Wage for all those employed by Brighton and Hove City Council.

A Scrutiny Review provides the opportunity for a cross-party panel of councillors to look into a subject which affects the whole city, and provide recommendations based on the findings.

The Campaign asked the Scrutiny Committee to look into a number of questions, including:

  • How much it would cost the Council to introduce a Living Wage
  • What savings the Council would make (in terms of staff retention and recruitment, savings on benefits to low waged individuals) by introducing a Living Wage
  • How many council employees, or those employed under council contracts, are currently paid less than a Living Wage
  • The extent to which a Living Wage might encourage unemployed people caught in the ‘benefits trap’ and unwilling to take up very low paid work to start employment

The Scrutiny Committee will decide in September which topics they will review. A report of the Scrutiny recommendations will go to decision-makers and to full Council.

There is ample evidence that setting a Living Wage is not only good for employees, but has a positive effect on the wider local economy. We hope that a Scrutiny Review of how a Living Wage would impact on Brighton will convince councillors that including a Living Wage in the Council Budget will benefit the whole city.

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