Mayor announces London Living Wage increase to £9.40/hour

02 November 2015

Mayor announces London Living Wage increase as 30,000 capital workers now benefit

• The London Living Wage is to increase to £9.40 per hour
• Number of employers paying the London Living Wage has grown from 429 to 724 in the last year
• The LLW has increased by 40.3 per cent over 10 years and more than 30,000 workers have benefitted since 2011

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson has today announced a near three per cent increase in the London Living Wage and revealed 295 additional employers this year are now paying their staff the capital’s hourly rate.

The London Living Wage has increased from £9.15 to £9.40 per hour, a rise of 2.7 per cent, and the calculation of the rate reflects the higher costs of living in the city.

Announcing the increase today [Monday 2 November], the Mayor also revealed the number of employers now paying their staff the London Living Wage has grown from 429 to 724 in the last 12 months. This compares with just 27 employers who publically backed the Living Wage in 2008.

Major brands including Oliver Bonas, Chelsea Football Club and GlaxoSmithKline have all joined the army of organisations now accredited as London Living Wage employers over the last year, while last month Lidl became the first major supermarket to pay its staff the rate.

Since 2005 the London Living Wage has grown by 40.3 per cent and more than 30,000 workers stretching across the capital have benefited from the increased wage since 2011.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, announced the new rate for the London Living Wage while visiting an Oliver Bonas store at One New Change - the first major high street retailer to sign up to the initiative. He said: “I am delighted that more than 700 employers have signed up to paying the London Living Wage and we now have tens of thousands of employees being properly rewarded for the work they do.

“As our economy continues to grow and employment in London increases, it is essential all hardworking Londoners receive a fair share of the proceeds of the capital’s success.

“I have long argued that those companies that can afford to pay the London Living Wage should do so because there are clear benefits for employers in increasing productivity and reducing staff turnover, while it makes a real difference to the quality of life for employees.
“I encourage businesses in the capital to follow the example of Lidl and Oliver Bonas and pay their staff the London Living Wage.”

The Mayor is actively encouraging businesses and organisations across London to sign up to the Living Wage Foundation’s accreditation scheme. He has written to more than 100 chief executives in the last 12 months, primarily in the retail, legal and service provider sectors, as well as football clubs and a number of FTSE 100 companies.

Research produced this year by the University of Strathclyde and the Living Wage Foundation highlighted the benefits to businesses that come from paying the Living Wage. As well as boosting the wages of staff, it can reduce staff turnover and absenteeism, increase worker morale and loyalty, boost productivity and enhance the reputation of an organisation.

Oliver Tress, Managing Director and Founder of Oliver Bonas said: “It makes complete sense to pay all our team at Oliver Bonas the London Living Wage. We want to pay a wage which both rewards our team for their hard work and loyalty and reflects the ‘real’ cost of living. We were the first retailer on the High Street to make this commitment and would encourage others to do so too.”

Sarah Vero, Director at the Living Wage Foundation, said: “Today’s announcement of the new, increased, London Living Wage rate brings a welcome pay rise to thousands of workers across the capital. Londoners are well aware that living costs in the capital have been rising faster than wages, and for many staff that are paid salaries close to the national minimums, life in this amazing city can be clouded by struggling from one pay day to the next.

“London businesses are leading the way, with hundreds of employers voluntarily paying their people the London Living Wage. This independently calculated rate reflects the real cost of living in London. The difference between this rate and the new minimum wage premium for over 25s of £7.20 is stark. Hard working Londoners are the capital’s life blood, they need a wage that respects the contribution they make to this great city.”

- Ends -

NOTES TO EDITORS

• The London Living Wage has risen by 2.7 per cent from £9.15 to £9.40. Since 2005 the wage has risen by 40.36 per cent.

• Accredited Living Wage employers alone have now provided more than 30,000 workers in London with the benefits of the living wage since 2011.

•The Living Wage Foundation supports both the London and National Living Wage campaigns by providing ‘accreditation’ to those Living Wage employers who want it.

•The accreditation process is administered by the Foundation, which is part of Citizens UK. ‘Accreditation’ entitles an employer to use the Living Wage mark. In addition accredited employers undertake to meet announced rises in the Living Wage within six months.

•There are now 724 London employers accredited, up from 429 the previous year. This compares with just 27 employers who publically backed the Living Wage in 2008.

• Over the past year there have been new living wage employers from every sector including private sector companies in finance and retail, third sector charities, a major football club, schools, colleges and the public sector.

• Key sign-ups in the private sector in the past year include well-known brands such as Chelsea Football Club, GSK and Oliver Bonas.

• Research conducted by the University of Strathclyde can be found here: http://www.livingwage.org.uk/sites/default/files/BAR_LivingWageReport%20...