Glasgow City Council is now accredited as a Living Wage employer. The council's Living Wage commitment will see everyone working at the local authority, including regular workers employed through third-party suppliers, receive a minimum hourly wage of at least £10.90 per hour. This rate is higher than the UK Government minimum for over-23s, which currently stands at £10.42 per hour.
Glasgow City Council is the largest local authority in Scotland serving a population of around 636,000 and has over 28,000 employees. As key employers, councils can have a significant impact in their local area by becoming accredited, encouraging suppliers, partners and local businesses to pay the real Living Wage, bringing extra income to low-paid workers.
In Scotland, 91% of all jobs pay at least the real Living Wage, this is higher than any other UK nation. Despite this, nearly 1 in 10 jobs still pay less than the real Living Wage - which equates to 221,000 jobs.
The real Living Wage is the only UK wage rate calculated according to the costs of living. Employers choose to pay the real Living Wage on a voluntary basis, recognising the value of their workers and ensuring that a hard day's work receives a fair day's pay.
Since 2011 the Living Wage movement has delivered a pay rise to over 60,000 people in Scotland and put over £370 million extra into the pockets of low paid Scottish workers.
Councillor Allan Casey, Convener for Workforce at Glasgow City Council, said: "It is both pleasing and significant that Glasgow City Council is now an accredited Living Wage employer. As one of the biggest employers in the city and indeed Scotland, it is important that we support our employees in this way. Given the impact of the cost-of-living crisis, the value of the Living Wage - which is based on living costs - is clear and aligns with the council's Fair Work ambitions and practices."
David Reilly, Acting Director of The Poverty Alliance, said: "We all need an income that is enough to cover our needs and protect us from poverty, and it's only right that employers pay a wage that reflects the cost of living. Too many workers in Scotland are paid less than the real Living Wage and, at a time of rising costs, are struggling to stay afloat. The real Living Wage can offer protection from those rising costs. Congratulations to Glasgow City Council on their Living Wage commitment, I hope more organisations follow their lead by becoming Living Wage accredited."
Lynn Anderson, Living Wage Scotland Manager, said: "We're delighted that Glasgow City Council has become an accredited Living Wage employer. They join a growing movement of over 3000 employers in Scotland who together want to ensure workers have what they need.
Accredited Living Wage employers report a range of business benefits including a happier, healthier and more productive workforce, and improvements in staff retention. Increasing wages to at least the real Living Wage boosts spending power for workers, which can help relieve financial worry, and can increase sales of essential goods and services in the local economy.
Local authorities are large employers with significant spending power and have an important leadership role in the growth of the Living Wage employer movement. Glasgow City Council becoming an accredited Living Wage employer is a fantastic example of action that all employers can consider, for the benefit of their workforce, their organisation and for society.