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Low pay leaves millions in poverty in UK: Report

A new report says low pay leaves millions of workers in a poverty trap in the UK. (File photo)

Source : Presstv / 12 Feb 2014

Millions of British lowest-paid workers are not to benefit from the economic recovery in the UK unless employers stop paying them poverty wages, a new report says.

According to the study by an independent commission, chaired by Archbishop of York John Sentamu, stagnant wages and rising living costs are creating a “double squeeze” on the lowest paid in the UK.

The report estimated that over 5 million workers are currently paid less than required for a basic standard of living in Britain, up by nine percent since the previous year.

The living wage is set at £7.65 an hour nationally or £8.80 for the capital city of London.

“The idea of making work pay is an empty slogan to millions of people who are hard-pressed and working hard, but find themselves in a downward social spiral,” Sentamu said.

In December last year, John Cridland, director general of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), also urged employers to pass on their profits to workers and support employees across Britain in the country’s labour market.

The remarks came after a study by the GMB trade union found that the real value of average earnings by all employees in the UK has dropped by almost 14 since 2008, when the financial crisis began.

Citing data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the union said average pay was £27,174 in 2013, compared with £26,137 in 2008.


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