11 leaders from seven member institutions took action to get the management of Thecentre:mk talking about the Living Wage.
Thecentre:mk is one of MK’s most famous institutions, defining in part at least our very culture as a community. MK’s largest building, it was opened by PM Margaret Thatcher in 1979 and today attracts 27m shoppers to MK each year from around the region. Earlier this year, it was announced that thecentre:mk will undergo a £50m revamp.
Citizens:mk’s Living Wage campaign team has been working for more than five years to drive up the number of MK employers who are accredited Real Living Wage employers, i.e. those who are committed to paying all staff and contract workers at least £8.45 per hour (the wage independently calculated to be what is needed for a decent standard of living).
And with some success…48 employers have been accredited so far (see list of MK fair employers). But the campaign’s target was 50 by the end of 2017, to celebrate MK’s 50th birthday.
The Living Wage campaign team wanted to show thecentre:mk the various benefits of being a Living Wage Employer.
Led by Debbie Wilson and Sheila Bacon of MK Quaker Meeting, with the help of Kurshida Mirza and Ayser Al Jawad of Truby’s Garden Tearoom and the Middle Eastern Cultural Group, the team finally got a face-to-face meeting with thecentre:mk’s administrator, Debbie Stevens, which led to a meeting with CEO Kevin Duffy.
Mr Duffy is concerned that accrediting thecentre:mk as a real Living Wage employer will give the public the wrong impression that all retailers in thecentre:mk are all accredited.
This is a work in progress.
Thecentre:mk is jointly owned by Hermes Real Estate Investment Management Ltd and AustralianSuper Pty Ltd and managed by CBRE Ltd.