Exeter Community Initiatives, a charity which helps people in Exeter who are facing poverty, inequality and homelessness get their lives back on track, has today been accredited by the Living Wage Foundation as a Living Wage Employer. Their Real Living Wage commitment will see everyone working at the charity receive a minimum hourly wage of £9.90, significantly higher than the government national minimum wage, which currently stands at £9.50 per hour for over 23’s.
Exeter Community Initiatives is based in the South West, a region where almost a fifth of all jobs (18.1%) pay less than the Real Living Wage – around 424,000 jobs. Despite this, the charity has committed to pay the Real Living Wage and deliver a fair day’s pay for a hard day’s work.
The Real Living Wage is the only rate calculated according to the costs of living. It provides a voluntary benchmark for employers that wish to ensure their staff earn a wage they can live on, not just the government minimum. Since 2011 the Living Wage movement has delivered a pay rise to over 300,000 people and put over £1.6 billion extra into the pockets of low paid workers.
Steven Chown, Chief Executive of Exeter Community Initiatives, said: “We’ve been paying the Living Wage to our staff for some time now, so we are proud to finally become an accredited Living Wage Employer. As a charity, it is important we treat our staff fairly, so we believe paying the Living Wage is the right thing to do, especially when the cost of living has risen so dramatically. I hope the accreditation also demonstrates how Exeter Community Initiatives is a great place to work in that we recognise, reward and empower staff”.
Katherine Chapman, Director, Living Wage Foundation said: “We’re delighted that Exeter Community Initiatives has joined the movement of almost 9,000 responsible employers across the UK who voluntarily commit to go further than the government minimum to make sure all their staff earn enough to live on.
“They join thousands of small businesses, as well as household names such as Burberry, Barclays, Everton Football Club and many more. These businesses recognise that paying the real Living Wage is the mark of a responsible employer and they, like Exeter Community Initiatives, believe that a hard day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay.”