One in five Sussex workers paid less than living wage (From The …

One in five Sussex workers paid less than living wage

4:20am Thursday 7th November 2013 in News1 By Neil Vowles2

More than one in five workers in Sussex are still paid less than the living wage.

Almost 210,000 of Sussex’s near 1 million workforce are paid less than 7.45 an hour according to a new report.

Arun has the highest rate of sub-living wage employees with 34% of the area’s 31,000 workers while almost one in seven Brighton and Hove workers earned below that level.

Business leaders in Bognor said the figures were an embarrassment and the area needed to attract more high-paying jobs to the area while living wage campaigners in Brighton and Hove said they were determined to ensure all workers were paid above the level.

The report, by accountants KPMG, also revealed that workers in Crawley and Brighton and Hove received the highest average hourly wage at 12.57 and 11.67 while Arun workers were on average the worst paid earning just 9.01 an hour.

Workers in every local authority area in Sussex apart from Crawley earned less than the average South East wage.

The living wage, which is 1.14 per hour higher than the national minimum wage, is calculated around the basic cost of living.

Tracey Allen, who runs the Living Wage campaign at the Brighton and Hove Chamber of Commerce, said: I would like to think the work we have done raising more than 750 people up to living wage over the last year has something to do with Brighton being among the lowest but we still have concerns.

We don’t want anyone in the city earning less than the living wage and we are pleased that awareness is being raised that people can’t live on the minimum wage.

I can’t put a timeframe on when all employees in the city will be one the living wage because it depends what happens with the economy but I would like to think all employers are weighing it up as a short or long-term aim.

Nick Stuart-Nicholson, president of Bognor Regis District Chamber of Commerce, said: It is an embarrassment to us.

One in three jobs is something to be concerned about but as a Chamber of Commerce what can we do?

I don’t see any evidence that any of the existing businesses are able to improve wages because we are still in a recession so it depends on attracting more higher-paying jobs to the area.

The report is based on the previous Living Wage of 7.45 an hour. This was increased to 7.65 an hour earlier this week.3

References

  1. ^ News (www.theargus.co.uk)
  2. ^ By Neil Vowles (www.theargus.co.uk)
  3. ^ This was increased to 7.65 an hour earlier this week. (www.theargus.co.uk)

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One in five Sussex workers paid less than living wage (From The …

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