First Living Wage government
First Minister hosts Living Wage summit as Scottish Government receives accreditation.
How the Living Wage could benefit employers, staff and the wider economy will be discussed at a summit in Edinburgh yesterday.
Key business leaders, including representatives from the SCDI, Chambers of Commerce and Federation of Small Businesses, will join First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Fair Work Secretary Roseanna Cunningham to look at how better paid staff can improve business productivity and ultimately drive forward the economy.
The summit follows new independent research that highlighted a number of benefits of the Living Wage to both staff and employers and comes on the same day that the Scottish Government had its own accreditation confirmed.
The First Minister said:
“The Scottish Government is committed to fairness and supporting those on the lowest incomes, and we recognise the real difference the Living Wage can make to the people of Scotland. Research published just last week highlighted enhanced productivity, reduced absenteeism and better staff morale as just some of its potential benefits.
“We have been working closely with the Poverty Alliance to encourage employers across Scotland to pay the Living Wage and to seek formal accreditation for doing so. There are now over 200 Scots-based employers who proudly display the Living Wage Accreditation Marque.
“The Scottish Government has been paying all of its staff above the level of the Living Wage for some time but now we are happy to say that we are amongst the number of officially accredited employers – a step which further demonstrates our commitment to payment of the Living Wage in Scotland.
“However, more needs to be done. We are committed to having 500 Scots-based Living Wage accredited employers by March 2016, a decisive long-term commitment to those on the lowest pay."
Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work, Skills and Training Roseanna Cunningham met a number of Scottish Government Modern Apprentices (MAs) and contracted service staff – all benefitting from the Living Wage – this morning in St Andrew’s House. She said:
“I am delighted that the Scottish Government’s Living Wage Accreditation has been confirmed. This is a particularly good deal for our MAs, who, are actually paid above the level of the Living Wage despite the National Minimum Wage for apprentices being less than half the Living Wage.
“We feel this is setting a good example to other Scottish employers and I hope to see more follow suit. We will also continue to press Westminster to move the minimum wage for apprentices towards the level of the Living Wage, calls which have gone unheeded so far.”
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