Monday 12 November 2012

Butt reaffirms Council commitment to London Living Wage

In his report to Full Council, Brent Council leader Muhammed Butt reiterates the Executive's support for the London Living Wage to be paid to directly employed council workers. The London Living Wage was recently increased to £8.55 an hour.  The Living Wage is distinct from the lower Minimum Wage, which in London is barely a survival wage. The council also aims to extend the living wage to all its contractors.

It is believed that payment of the London Living Wage was one of the issues behind the conflict between Butt and Gareth Daniel which led to the latter leaving his job and it remains a controversial issue within the Labour group on the council. Its implementation in Brent has been accompanied by the intention to impose flexible work patterns on the entire Brent Council workforce.

In his report Muhammed Butt says:
We will become a Living Wage Borough. We believe that it is a fundamental moral principle that people should be paid enough to more than simply exist. We will with other Public and private sector organisations become accredited with the Living Wage Foundation. In doing this we commit to extending the living wage principles which we already adhere to with our own staff to all those contracts outside of Social Care, and also to a dialogue with the Living Wage Foundation and other Councils to find an affordable way to extend our living wage offer to all contracts. Fair pay is essential to address our three key tenets of fairness, supporting community and the local economy.
I welcome the commitment to pay the London Living Wage at a time when families and individuals are faced with so much pressure due to Coalition and council cuts.  What many people don’t know is that the Living Wage Unit was set up under Ken Livingstone’s administration thanks to the Green Party members of the London Assembly, Jenny Jones and Darren Johnson.

They held a casting vote over the Mayor’s budget for four years and used it to get a fair deal for all London government’s employees and create the Living Wage Unit to calculate the amount needed to get by in the capital

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