New Living Wage vital for economy & tackling inequality, says Harvie

The new Living Wage of £9 an hour is vital for supporting the economy and tackling inequality, according to Scottish Greens co-convener Patrick Harvie MSP.

Today's announcement from the Living Wage Foundation - at the start of Living Wage week - comes as the Prime Minister is expected to announce a rise in the UK Government's "National Living Wage" to £8.21 for the over-25s, and as social care providers say they are struggling to implement the real Living Wage due to complex funding arrangements.

Scottish Greens Fair Work spokesperson Patrick Harvie MSP, who today visited Living Wage employer Woodland Outdoor Kindergartens in Glasgow, said:

“Ensuring wages keep pace with the cost of living is a win-win. Businesses who already pay the real Living Wage have more productive employees who in turn can spend more to support the wider economy.

“The UK Government’s fake living wage shows the Tories are content to leave younger workers in particular in poorly paid, insecure employment while pushing the laughable claim that any kind of pay packet gives you dignity. The Scottish Government meanwhile needs to bring some order to the confusing situation in social care where a real Living Wage could help retain and recruit vital staff but it seems the funding promised isn’t reaching the front line.

“Greens will always argue that it’s a false economy to squeeze wages when we have such gross inequality in our society.”