‘A fair day’s pay for a hard day’s work’. That’s what Brent Council believes all staff deserve, which is why for the eighth year in a row, the council has been accredited by the Living Wage Foundation as a London Living Wage Employer.
Brent Council has been a London Living Wage employer since 2013 and was the first council in the UK to introduce a formal business rates discount for Living Wage accredited employers.
A Living Wage is the only UK wage rate that is voluntarily paid by organisations and businesses who believe their staff deserve a fair day’s pay for a hard day’s work. It is higher than the government minimum and is calculated based on actual living costs to make sure that a person's earnings meet the cost of rent, childcare, travel, food and household bills. The London rate is higher to take into account the higher costs of housing in the capital.
Accreditation means that the council has voluntarily committed to:
- Paying the real London Living Wage to all directly employed council staff over the age of 18
- Ensuring all third-party contracted and sub-contracted regular, on-site staff are paid the real London Living Wage, where appropriate
- Increasing the wages of these groups to the Living Wage within six months of any rise in the calculated Living Wage rates.
The accreditation is valid for one year, until July 2022.
Cllr Margaret McLennan, Deputy Leader of Brent Council, said:
"It’s not fair that some have no choice but to juggle two or more jobs, just to make ends meet.
“Brent’s Poverty Commission highlighted the impact of poverty on our communities and while work can help to provide a route out of poverty, that’s only if the wage reflects their cost of living."
Cllr Thomas Stephens, Brent’s Cabinet Member for Education, Employment and Skills, said:
“We want to lead by example and show local businesses how important it is that workers are paid a fair wage. I want to thank those who are similarly setting the standard, including Brent Mencap, Ark Academy and CVS Brent – among many more.”
As well as doing better for staff, the council are also working hard to do better for local people. Most job vacancies in the council do not ask for formal qualifications unless it is a technical or professional requirement such as social work or teaching. This is to encourage more people to apply for opportunities in Brent Council, who in turn will benefit from working with a London Living Wage employer.