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gruffydd

Universal Living Wage Campaign - Aims To Fix The

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What an interesting idea !!!!!

http://www.universallivingwage.org/

I'm implementing a living wage policy for one of my clients - it is v interesting how the yanks are so far ahead of us on this one

"The term Living Wage has been used successfully in the United States as a campaign tool in many different ways. The first Living Wage law in the US was passed in 1994 following a campaign by the Baltimore-based Industrial Areas Foundation-East affiliate, B.U.I.L.D. Since then, over 120 city and state governments have passed living wage ordinances following pressure from community organisations and trade unions.

Living wage campaigns have come near to doubling the legal minimum wage in many cities and have provided benefits like health care for thousands of workers."

- here's an old (2002) but interesting article on the subject -

'Living wage' laws gain momentum across US

New study shows higher incomes from 'living wage' outweigh the cost in job losses.

By Daniel B. Wood | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

INGLEWOOD, CALIF. – Three years ago, Juana Zatarin couldn't make ends meet. The mother of three, a baggage handler at Los Angeles International Airport, was subsisting on an income about half that of the federal poverty rate of $17,028 for a family of four.

Today, thanks to a "living wage" law requiring city contractors to pay employees a minimum of $8.97 per hour, Ms. Zatarin earns more than $24,000 a year. Now life is good. "I can make my payments on time now and even have a chance to take some time off," she says.

It is a story that is being repeated in dozens of cities across America as part of a trend that – surprisingly – has continued to spread even during the economic downturn.

When Baltimore in 1994 became the first American city to adopt a so-called living-wage ordinance, critics said it would reduce employment and hobble local businesses and contractors forced to pay higher wages.

But more than 60 municipalities have since passed such laws, including the broadest yet in New Orleans in February, and another last week in Santa Fe. The laws mandate that businesses under contract with the city – or in some cases businesses that receive grants, subsidies, or tax breaks from the city pay employees a wage large enough to lift their families out of poverty. (In California, wages under such agreements range from a low of $7.25 in Pasadena to a high of $11 in Santa Cruz.)

http://www.csmonitor.com/2002/0315/p01s02-usec.html

Edited by gruffydd

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The yanks are often very forward thinking on social issues, and very aware of major societal shifts taking place. 'Destruction of the middle class' is a mainstream phrase over there, while here no one seems to care or even notice that millions of people are now underemployed in low-paid McJobs who would once have had living wage employment.

As someone who's lived on a very low income the social costs of wages that simply don't meet living costs are huge - poor health, poor eating habits, difficult to improve your lot or branch out, escallation of debt. People in work can not give their best as they are often too browbeaten, many exhausted and distracted by second jobs. Unemployed people see no benefit in working if it means no improvement in their life or means they need to go into debt to make up a shortfall in income.

Restoring buying power to the low paid has massive cost savings. All those 'nanny state' jobs HPCers are obsessed with really only exist to mop up the fall out of millions of people on unrealistic incomes trying, and often failing, to support themselves.

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The yanks are often very forward thinking on social issues, and very aware of major societal shifts taking place. 'Destruction of the middle class' is a mainstream phrase over there, while here no one seems to care or even notice that millions of people are now underemployed in low-paid McJobs who would once have had living wage employment.

I'm not sure that many of the former middle class are working in McDonalds on minimum wages!

I have noticed that the market rates for workaday accounting/ office jobs requiring a degree of ability and intelligence have stagnated for around ten years. Many people who have been in steady employment with decent employers and have had their 3-4% pa increase are in a painful position if they need to find a new job.

EDIT: If young graduates are finding it difficult to find decent employment now, what will the situation be like with any kind of a slowdown?

Edited by a j

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I'm not sure that many of the former middle class are working in McDonalds on minimum wages!

I have noticed that the market rates for workaday accounting/ office jobs requiring a degree of ability and intelligence have stagnated for around ten years. Many people who have been in steady employment with decent employers and have had their 3-4% pa increase are in a painful position if they need to find a new job.

EDIT: If young graduates are finding it difficult to find decent employment now, what will the situation be like with any kind of a slowdown?

yes - i have to concur on this one (unfortunately) :(

i got a mailshot from hays accountancy last week and the salaries were, quite frankly, rubbish for people who would usually have degrees and a professional qualification. granted i know we are in a globally competitive world and there are millions of indians/chinese who are itching to eat our collective lunches etc etc.

still, not good nonetheless. :ph34r:

Edited by gasket37

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yes - i have to concur on this one (unfortunately) :(

i got a mailshot from hays accountancy last week and the salaries were, quite frankly, rubbish for people who would usually have degrees and a professional qualification. granted i know we are in a globally competitive world and there are millions of indians/chinese who are itching to eat our collective lunches etc etc.

still, not good nonetheless. :ph34r:

Im not so concerned about the pay rates for qualified accountants, other than in the selfish sense. Its the skilled office work (payroll, AP, admin assistants etc) where there seems to be stagnation, particularly depressing given the number of young people with graduate debts in those positions.

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true - i think software has had a lot to do with this as well.

i'm (just :P ) old enough to remember when tasks like payroll were (and with legislation like tax credits still is) quite "technical" when they had to be done manually.

now there is a large element of "numbers in boxes" and a lot of people can run a payroll after skimming through the "quick guide". whether they can spot errors is of course a different manner.

in the town where i work the weekly jobs section in the local rag has shrunk alarmingly over the last few weeks and the jobs therein are, like you say quite poorly paid.

there was a thread on this site about bus drivers - the wages haven't changed since the 1980's.

i've read articles where in the US your average factory worker is earning less in real terms than 30 years ago. :(

with the expansion in higher education your newbie graduate is carrying £20K of debt as well - as i'm sure you are aware this has been done to death on this site!

there is a large bank in the town where i live where staff who have been there for years with pensions and benefits etc etc can earn £17K-£20K who work alongside agency staff earning minimum wage - and this is 'just' for postroom work!

still - who said life was ever "fair". :(

hmmm - i seem to be rambling on this thread so perhaps i'd better stop.

Edited by gasket37

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  • 302 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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