What is the
Living Wage?

Over 10,000 London families have been lifted out of working poverty as a direct result of the Living Wage
Professor Jane Wills, Queen Mary University of London

What is it?

  • An hourly rate set independently and updated annually
  • The Living Wage is calculated according to the basic cost of living in the UK
  • The current UK Living Wage is £7.85 an hour
  • The current London Living Wage is £9.15 an hour
  • Employers choose to pay the Living Wage on a voluntary basis
  • The Living Wage enjoys cross party support, with public backing from the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition
  • Paying the Living Wage is good for business, good for the individual and good for society
  • The Living Wage Employer Mark and Service Provider Recognition Scheme provide an ethical badge for responsible pay

What are the benefits?

Good for Business

An independent study examining the business benefits of implementing a Living Wage policy in London found that more than 80% of employers believe that the Living Wage had enhanced the quality of the work of their staff, while absenteeism had fallen by approximately 25%.

Two thirds of employers reported a significant impact on recruitment and retention within their organisation. 70% of employers felt that the Living Wage had increased consumer awareness of their organisation’s commitment to be an ethical employer.

Following the adoption of the Living Wage PwC found turnover of contractors fell from 4% to 1%. 

Good for Families

The Living Wage affords people the opportunity to provide for themselves and their families. 

75% of employees reported increases in work quality as a result of receiving the Living Wage.

50% of employees felt that the Living Wage had made them more willing to implement changes in their working practices; enabled them to require fewer concessions to effect change; and made them more likely to adopt changes more quickly.

Good for Society

The Living Wage campaign was launched in 2001 by parents in East London, who were frustrated that working two minimum wage jobs left no time for family life.

The causes of poverty are complex and in order to improve lives there should be a package of solutions across policy areas. The Living Wage can be part of the solution.