Above-inflation rise pushes pay pledge over the £10 barrier in London for first time with more than 150,000 workers set to benefit across UK
More than 150,000 workers will get an inflation-beating pay rise on Monday as the UK living wage, which is paid voluntarily by more than 3,600 employers, is increased against a backdrop of rising transport, food and housing costs.
The pay rate will rise 3.6% to £8.75 per hour around the UK and 4.6% to £10.20 in London, giving a wages boost to workers at companies which have adopted the measure, including Google and IKEA.
Katherine Chapman, the director of the Living Wage Foundation, said the increase in the living wage was driven by inflation, currently running at 3%, and the increased cost of household goods, rents and transport. The living wage is independently calculated and designed to reflect the “real cost of living in the UK and London”.
“The new living wage rates will bring relief for thousands of UK workers being squeezed by stagnant wages and rising inflation,” Chapman said. “It’s thanks to the leadership of over 3,600 employers across the UK who are committed to paying all their staff, including cleaners and security staff, a real living wage.”
Two-thirds of FTSE 100 companies, including BP, BT, Vodafone, Shell have failed to join the voluntary pledge.
Dr Wanda Wyporska, the executive director of The Equality Trust, said: “It’s incredible to see so many of the UK’s largest businesses refuse to pay their staff a living wage. It’s even more appalling when you consider the average pay for a FTSE 100 boss is now over 300 times that of a minimum wage worker.”
The increase takes the voluntary UK living wage to £3.15 more than the mandatory minimum wage for 18- to 20-year-olds. The national living wage, which is simply the name given to the statutory national minimum wage rate for over 25s, is set at £7.50 an hour.