Chuka Umunna MP, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary, commenting on Living Wage Week 2014 said: “At a time when families have been hit by a cost-of-living crisis, we need to see more better-paid, high-skilled jobs which pay a Living Wage. The majority of people living in poverty in Britain today have a job, and there are more than five million people in work who are earning less than a Living Wage.”
“Living Wage Week and the Living Wage Foundation have played a hugely important role in promoting the Living Wage. It is welcome that more businesses have signed up to become Living Wage employers this week, but we need to see faster progress. That’s why the next Labour government will provide new incentives for firms to pay a Living Wage, helping them raise productivity, alongside setting a more ambitious target for the minimum wage.”
Cllr Mick Lerry said: “Ed Miliband MP has confirmed that firms which sign up to paying the Living Wage at the start of the Parliament will benefit from a 12-month tax rebate of up to £1,000 – and an average of £445 – for every low paid worker who get a pay rise. The measure will be entirely funded from the increased tax and National Insurance revenue received by the Treasury when employees receive higher wages. Additional savings in lower tax credits and benefit payments, as well as increased tax revenues in future years, will cut social security bills and help pay down the deficit”.
Lifting staff out of ‘in-work poverty’
More than 400 employers, including 21 Labour local authorities, are now fully accredited by the Living Wage Foundation, but many other private sector firms would benefit from the increased staff retention, improved productivity, and reputational benefits that come from lifting their staff out of in-work poverty.
“Employers will be able to use this transitional funding for capital investment and training so that they raise productivity and higher wages are sustainable through the course of the next Parliament’, says Mick
On entering office, the new Labour government will launch a national campaign to agree Make Work Pay Contracts with British businesses. These contracts will mean that in return for becoming accredited Living Wage employers within the first year of a Labour government, businesses will receive back 12-months’ worth of the resulting increased tax and National Insurance revenues received by the Government.
Cllr. Mick Lerry – Leader of the Labour Group on Sedgemoor District Council
Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Bridgwater and West Somerset Constituency
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