More charities will be able to pay staff the Living Wage now that four new grant-making organisations have joined the Living Wage Foundation’s scheme for charity funders.
Often one of the down sides for quality candidates seeking work in the charitable sector is low pay. While all employers must pay the minimum wage, few charity employers are able to pay their staff the real living wage.
This is set to change as the Coutts Foundation, the Goodall Foundation, Money Advice Trust and Millfield House Foundation have all received recognition as Living Wage Friendly Funders. The scheme recognises funders that commit to supporting charities by funding posts at the Living Wage rate.
As part of their commitment to being Friendly Funders, these organisations will support charities to pay the Living Wage to any grant-funded staff posts.
Living Wage Friendly Funders work together to end low pay in the Voluntary and Community sector. Thousands of charities and funders have already embraced the Living Wage across the UK, but low pay remains a real challenge across the sector.
Katherine Chapman, Director, Living Wage Foundation, said:
“The leadership shown by The Coutts Foundation, the Goodall Foundation, Money Advice Trust and Millfield House as Living Wage Friendly Funders demonstrates a commitment to tackling the serious problems that low pay brings to our communities. Many organisations in the voluntary and community sectors are working hard to tackle social injustice and poverty; it’s only right that those committed to these roles are afforded at least a Living Wage. We hope to see many more funders and corporates follow the lead of the Living Wage Friendly Funders. At a time when half of those in poverty live in a household where someone has a job, the Living Wage is much needed by families across the UK. The Living Wage is a robust calculation that reflects the real cost of living, rewarding a hard day’s work with a fair day’s pay.”
There are now 27 funders signed up to this scheme including People’s Health Trust, Trust for London, Barrow Cadbury, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Comic Relief, the London Borough of Islington, City Bridge Trust and Lloyds Bank Foundation.
The Minimum Wage in the UK is currently £7.50 an hour in the UK, but the UK Living Wage, which is set independently and calculated in accordance to the basic cost of living in the UK, is considerably higher at £8.45, rising to £9.75 in London.
Toby Lowe, Chair of Millfield House Foundation, said:
“Millfield House Foundation’s whole purpose is to improve the conditions of economically and socially disadvantaged people here in the North East. We see very clearly what a low wage economy can do to the people being paid too little and to the economy of the region. That’s why we advocate paying the Living Wage and are pleased to be a Living Wage Friendly Funder.”
Leslie Gent, trustee of the Coutts Foundation, said:
“The mission of the Coutts Foundation is to support sustainable approaches to tackle the causes and consequences of poverty, focusing on the communities where Coutts has a presence. Growing commitment for the Living Wage in all sectors is critical to tackling poverty in the UK. Given the Foundation’s mission, in addition to having given a three-year grant to support the work of the Living Wage Foundation, we are delighted to join the Living Wage Friendly Funder network.”
Eugenie Teasley, CEO of The Goodall Foundation, said:
“It’s fantastic that there is now a growing groundswell amongst funders to recognise the importance of paying fairly in the charity and voluntary sector. I very much hope this leads to greater diversity across all teams; we will do better and achieve more if we can recruit and retain talented people, including those who cannot afford to take a wage cut to pursue a career through which they aspire to have a positive impact on the world around them.”
Jane Tully, Director of External Affairs at the Money Advice Trust, said:
“Through our work at National Debtline, we recognise the role that fair pay plays in enabling people to balance their finances and manage their debts. The Living Wage scheme has played a significant role in addressing low pay across the UK and is backed up by calculations that reflect the real cost of living – which is all the more important at a time of economic uncertainty and rising inflation.
“We at the Trust are pleased to be playing our part in challenging low pay in this sector and look forward to many more organisations joining us to tackle this issue in other areas as well.”
The Living Wage Friendly Funder scheme is kindly supported by the People’s Health Trust.
John Hume, Chief Executive, People’s Health Trust, said:
“People’s Health Trust is very pleased to welcome these four organisations as the latest charitable funders to join the Living Wage Friendly Funder network. By becoming part of this rapidly growing scheme, they have demonstrated their commitment, as funders, to working towards ending low pay in the Voluntary and Community sector. We want to see the Living Wage become the norm, wherever possible, and believe that funding organisations can lead the way in making this happen within the Voluntary Sector.”