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Paying workers the National Living Wage is 'morally' right say Quedgeley parish councillors

By citizenmike  |  Posted: December 17, 2013

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Parish councillor Graham Smith: We have a 'moral' duty

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Paying workers a living wage is ‘morally’ right, parish councillors have said.

Quedgeley Parish Council employees currently receive the minimum wage, which musters in at just £6.31 per hour.

But from April 1 they will receive a wage boost after councillors approved a plan to put them all on the living wage, which is £7.45 per hour.

The plan will cost taxpayers £8,000 per year on top of the council’s existing budget for salaries.

But councillors said they had a ‘moral’ duty to pay the living wage for all of their workers.

Vice chairman Graham Smith said: “The parish council can say that we are setting a precedent among local organisations by paying all of our employees the living wage.

“Our budget can withstand the increase. It is not something we have to do but morally we should because it shows we are looking after our employees and setting a good example for others.”

Quedgeley Parish Council will now apply for national accreditation to show that it is leading the way with the living wage.

It is a campaign that has garnered wider support within the county in recent weeks and months.

The council is the latest organisation to announce it would increase salaries to reflect the National Living Wage.

Gloucestershire County Council recently agreed to provide the living wage for 119 of its 900 workers who currently earn less than that level. It was seen as a major step forward in improving work conditions and it was hoped by campaigners that it would encourage other businesses and organisations to follow suit.

In November, businesses and trade unions in Gloucestershire signed a groundbreaking agreement in support of paying the Living Wage to employees in the county.

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady and Phil Smith, managing director of Business West, put their names to a joint declaration urging employers to pay their staff at least the living wage.

In October staff from the University of Gloucestershire went on strike as it emerged many workers earn below the living wage level.

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4 comments

  • socialista  |  December 18 2013, 10:53PM

    supernova1, Perhaps you`ve spent the last 5 years on Planet Tory - in the REAL WORLD bankers got us into this mess, and contrary to your Mickey Mouse analysis they were rewarded for failure with an astronomical bailout from the state. So don`t persevere with this nonsense about salaries & wages being "earned on merit". Nobody, including you, believes that anymore. The powerful make sure they are rewarded whatever happens. In the REAL WORLD workers need a LIVING WAGE to live on - the clue is in the name! By the way, you clearly don`t understand how central banks work which is why you`ve ignored the fact that £375bn of national debt has effectively been cancelled through the Bank of England`s (BoE) quantitative easing (QE) programme. Another economically illiterate right winger!

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  • supernova1  |  December 18 2013, 9:49AM

    socialista.....unfortunately, your pinko tendancies have colored the real truth. The idiots in the Liebour party refuse to see the plain truth, that the economy is turning, albeit slower than any of us wanted. USA tried to buy their way out of debt, and it hasn't worked. Europe, well enough said, except that with without Germany, it would be a dust bowl. I'm not against people earning more, which is my main point, and one you have singularly ignored. They have to DO more. In private businesses, yearly increases even to match inflation, have to be earned on merit. This will be work for the year 'above expectation'. Workers that just plod along, will get less than inflation. It's a very simple system, and works brilliantly. See the faces of workers coming out from their appraisal or revue with a low evaluation, and they are devastated. It's not just the money, it's the fact that they feel they have let their colleagues down. This of course will be an anathema to anyone in the public sector.

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  • socialista  |  December 18 2013, 1:33AM

    supernova1, Oh dear, this right wing bilge is still being trotted out by economic illiterates like you 3 years into the cuts. What workers in the PRIVATE & PUBLIC sector realise is that salaries & profits for the 1% are going up while real wages for the 99% are falling. There`s always money for the politically/economically powerful as an honest banker or politician would tell you - if such a thing existed! The minimum wage should be increased to the living wage and automatically indexed to inflation. Since you clearly have a problem with the concept of people receiving enough money to live on here`s a brief lesson on why the national debt is a non-issue: Budgets are being shrunk for political reasons, there`s no shortage of money as the Bank of England`s (BoE) quantitative easing (QE) programme demonstrated by purchasing £375bn of the national debt from private holders of UK debt. But instead of cancelling it the Treasury pays interest on that debt to the BoE. In Autumn 2012 George Osborne, in a desperate attempt to make it look like the deficit was going down asked the then governor of the BoE, Mervyn King, to pay the QE interest back to the Treasury. King promptly agreed. This £375bn of national debt should be cancelled, rather than having one branch of government (the Treasury) pay interest on this debt to another branch of government (the Bank of England) which then pays it back to the Treasury. This is an accounting trick that the UK`s leading accountant & economist Richard Murphy has repeatedly pointed out on his website - the motive is purely political - i.e. to hide the ease with which national debt can be repurchased & cancelled. See for yourself: http://tinyurl.com/kqgssqo

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  • supernova1  |  December 17 2013, 10:33AM

    Yes, I'd LOVE to earn more, but unless I actually DO more, why should I? The fact is, and is lost on public sector idealists, and union official fantasists, all of these proposals are inflationary, meaning that all of us, including those getting the increase, will have to pay more. To say 'Our budget can withstand the increase' is a blatant lie. So there's eight grand just in an account at the end of every year is there? If that IS the case, the council haven't been doing their job properly. Conversely, if there ISN'T eight grand left over, it has to be found from somewhere, meaning other services will be squeezed. If these people were actually running their own businesses, with their own money, they would not be profligate.

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