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Updates from the Living Wage Foundation

Living Pensions – providing a pension that workers can live on

2021 marks the 20th anniversary of the Living Wage campaign and the ambition to eradicate in-work poverty and secure wages that meet the real costs of living.

With nearly 8000 employers accredited, the campaign for a real Living Wage has ensured hundreds of thousands of workers are earning a wage they can live on, not just the government minimum. But it is essential to help them plan, so they will not have to work beyond an acceptable age, or risk entering poverty in later life.

The introduction of auto enrolment back in 2012 has been a huge success, but for many it does not go far enough in ensuring they are able to build a sufficient pension to maintain an acceptable standard of living in retirement. The latest figures show that 2.1 million (18 per cent) of pensioners in the UK live in poverty. Building on the success of other employer accreditation schemes, such as Living Hours, we want to help employers go further and provide a Living Pension for their workers on lower incomes.

Earlier this year, the Resolution Foundation published a report on the feasibility of a pension savings target, supported by Aviva, making the case for the creation of a simple Living Pension benchmark on the same broad principles as the calculation of the Living Wage. With funding from the Standard Life Foundation, we have now kicked off the Living Pension Programme in earnest, to look at how this might be achieved.

To support this work, we want to gather insight and feedback from employers and experts in the pension sector, as well as talking to workers and retirees. Over the next year we will bring together a set of recommendations based on these insights for how we might deliver a Living Pension accreditation following a pilot programme in 2022.

It’s incredibly important for us to work with a range of stakeholders in designing this and if this is something that interests you, please help us by completing this short survey and tell us how you want to get involved.




Supporting us in driving forward this programme is our Living Pensions Steering Group made up of experts across the financial services sector, and with particular focus on workplace pensions.

19th July 2021
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