Living Wage now £8.25 across the UK and £9.40 in London

The Living Wage is now significantly higher than George Osborne's planned 'National Living Wage'

Jon Stone
Monday 02 November 2015 10:58 GMT
The living wage has gone up
The living wage has gone up

The hourly rate workers must be paid in order to meet basic living costs has risen again across the UK.

The living wage, which is calculated by the independent Living Wage Foundation, is now £8.25, up from £7.85 last year.

In the capital, where living costs are higher, the foundation has calculated the voluntary rate as £9.40 – up from £9.15.

The increase comes after the Government rebranded the National Minimum Wage the “National Living Wage” and pledged to raise it to £7.20 by April 2016.

The new legal NLW is significantly lower than the actual minimum wage, however. It also only applies to people who are over 25 years of age.

Sarah Vero, director Living Wage Foundation said, in-work poverty in Britain was an injustice.

“Today we are celebrating those 2,000 responsible businesses that are voluntarily paying the Living Wage to their staff,” she said.

“These employers are not waiting for Government to tell them what to do; their actions are helping to end the injustice that is in-work poverty in the UK now. The Living Wage campaign is growing at pace.”

Ms Vero announced new businesses who were voluntarily paying the new living wage, including Richer Sounds, Lloyds Banking Group, and Unilever.

Researchers at the Resolution Foundation have warned that the living wage could have to go even higher if the Government’s tax credit cuts go ahead.

The same organisation also found today that a third of women in their 20s earn less than the living wage.

Figures released by the Office for National Statistics last month found that the proportion of workers not being paid the living wage is rising.

“Between April 2008 and April 2010, the proportion of jobs paid less than the living wage in London was stable at around 13%, but it had risen to 19% by April 2014," the ONS said.

“For the rest of the UK, where only 3 years of estimates are available, the proportion of employee jobs paid less than the living wage rose from 21% in April 2012 to 23% in April 2014.”

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