Over 1,000 people working for 50 employers in Norwich will benefit from a pay uplift, as the Real Living Wage rate increases to £10.90 an hour today.
The real Living Wage rates remain the only wage rates independently calculated based on what people need to live on. This year the rate increased by a record 10.1% in the UK, reflecting sharp increases in living costs driven by a spike in inflation and a doubling of energy prices.
The rate increase has been welcomed by the Norwich Living Wage City Action Group - which recently secured Living Wage Place status for Norwich and is working to triple the number of accredited Living Wage Employers in the city over the next three years.
The real Living Wage is an hourly rate of pay calculated by the Living Wage Foundation based on what people need to live on to pay for costs including fuel, energy, rent and food.
It is paid voluntarily by employers, going beyond the national minimum wage rates set by Government – currently £9.50/hr for anyone over the age of 23.
Spearheading the campaign to make Norwich a Living Wage city, the Norwich Living Wage City Action Group is made up of leaders from a broad range of local employers that want to do more to deliver fair pay for all. This includes Norwich City Council, Aviva, City College Norwich, Broadland Housing Association, representatives from local SMEs and the Voluntary sector.
Councillor Alan Waters, Leader of Norwich City Council and Chair of the Group, said:
“With living costs rising sharply and many families struggling in Norwich, today’s record uplift in the real Living Wage is sorely needed. Chronic low pay and the current cost of living crisis has meant the lowest paid in our communities are experiencing in-work poverty and very real hardship - decent pay which covers basic living costs is central to the solution.
“The Norwich Living Wage City Action Group will continue to make the case to businesses in the city to pay the Real Living Wage and ensure everyone is paid a fair day’s wage for a fair day’s work.”
Jane Basham, Chief Executive Officer of Norfolk Community Law Service, said:
“The increase of 10% to the real Living Wage rate announced today could be life changing for so many across Norwich and Norfolk if all employers could commit to paying it. People in work facing this cost of living crisis know that the current Government National Living Wage really isn’t enough to live on - it is now 15% less than the Real Living Wage rate of £10.90 an hour and just under 26% less in London.
“Pay must keep up with living costs in order to reduce the numbers of people falling into poverty and debt. Norfolk Community Law Service is proud to be a real Living Wage employer. It makes a difference.”