What is the Real Living Wage?

The 15-year campaign for a Living Wage achieved a major success in 2015 when the government announced the introduction of a higher minimum wage rate for over-25 year olds – even calling it a ‘national living wage’.

However the government’s ‘national ‘national living wage’ is not calculated according to what employees and their families need to live. The Living Wage movement has always supported a strong government minimum, but our focus is encouraging all employers that can afford to do so to ensure their employees earn a wage that meets the real costs of living. Only the real Living Wage is independently-calculated based on what employees and their families need to get by.

There are still nearly 6 million people paid less than a real Living Wage. That’s why the campaign for the simple idea that a fair day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay has not been won. And that’s why we need more employers to go further than the government minimum and pay the real Living Wage today!

What is the Living Wage campaign?

The Living Wage campaign is an independent movement of businesses, organisations and people who believe a fair day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay. We campaign to ensure that everyone can earn a real Living Wage that meets their costs of living, not just the government minimum.

Since the campaign began in 2001, at least 150,000 employees have received a pay increase as a direct result of the campaign – demonstrating how civil society, businesses and organisations can work together to deliver meaningful social change today without waiting for the government to take action.

Why pay a real Living Wage that meets the cost of living?

For people who are paid the real Living Wage, it means the difference between just getting the government minimum and earning enough to afford the things you need to live, like a decent meal, a warm home and a birthday treat for your children. That basic fairness is at the heart of what our campaign is trying to achieve and why great businesses and organisations choose to go further than the government minimum.

Who pays it?

Business by business and organisation by organisation Living Wage employers are voluntarily taking a stand to ensure their employees can earn a wage which is enough to live on. Today nearly 3,300 employers have voluntarily committed to ensure all directly-employed and subcontracted staff working on their premises earn a real Living Wage – including nearly a third of the FTSE-100 and major household names such as IKEA, Unilever, Nestle, Nationwide, the TUC, Oxfam and the Houses of Parliament.

alliance of diverse community organisations acting together for a thriving, inclusive and fairer Milton Keynes