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Alex is championing the Living Wage: ‘I’d campaign in Parliament for a Living Wage statutory for all employers. '

This week is Living Wage Week. 

Alex has long been a committed champion of the Living Wage. 

 ‘I have been a supporter of the Living Wage for about eight years since my then employer, UnLtd, supported the establishment of the Living Wage Campaign. At that time I organised an event in Leeds where the first national organiser of the campaign, Matthew Bolton, came to speak to Social Enterprises about the Living Wage and the campaign by cleaners at Canary Wharf to get a Living Wage.

 

Later that year I met some of those cleaners myself and heard their stories

 -  about how they couldn’t afford books for their children and clothes for themselves on the minimum wage working in the heart of the City of London,

- and about how they had gone to the Barclays AGM after the Living Wage Campaign bought a few Barclays shareholdings and told the board of their pay cleaning the offices of Barclays traders and executives.

Those cleaners won the Living Wage and the Living Wage has gone from strength to strength.

But there are still millions earning below a Living Wage in the UK.

 My employer Social Enterprise Yorkshire and the Humber has always paid the Living Wage. But 2 years ago I requested that the board seek to gain Living Wage accreditation. We did that, and have been encouraging organisations around the region to also become accredited.

This included working with Otley Town Council to become accredited which I’m delighted to say had happened.

 

The Living Wage of £7.85 per hour is important  - not just because it means people can work a single full time job and be able to look after themselves and their families, but because it also increases motivation, reduces sickness absence, and it means people don’t need to have two work 2 jobs to make ends meet.

The Living Wage doesn’t bring a life of luxury. It’s just enough for the necessities.

The minimum wage is the legal floor on pay. But it’s a legal floor which means poverty. That goes against everything in which I believe.

If elected I would campaign inside Parliament to make the minimum wage up to the Living Wage -  so that people could live on just one full time job, so that it wouldn’t be just some employers paying the Living Wage by choice, but all employers by statute.'

It  can’t be clearer than that. If you elect Alex next year, you know what he’ll fight and stand for.

 

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