London Mayor Boris Johnson has called for the minimum wage to be increased in the capital to £8.30 an hour, trustforlondon.co.uk reports.
His calls follow the publication of a report by Trust for London which claimed that in 2011, some 580,000 people in the capital were being paid below the “London living wage”.
Workers with jobs in London are already paid more than their regional counterparts, with the expense of city life negated by higher average wages. Whilst the minimum wage around the country is £5.80, the so-called ‘London Living Wage’ is £7.85, which has been in place since June 2010.
Now, following claims that over half a million people in London are being paid lower than what it is thought possible to live on, Johnson has called for a 45p increase to the Living Wage. This would see it reach £8.30 an hour. Not only would this benefit the workers, he said, but also make good business sense by making for a more dedicated workforce with lower levels of staff turnover.
Speaking to bbc.co.uk of the results, the chief executive of Trust for London, Bharat Mehta, explained: “Government can save nearly £1 billion a year in London if companies in the capital pay the Living Wage; workers receive thousands more in wages and employers can reap HR, reputational and efficiency benefits.
“This means there is no reason for large numbers of companies to pay poverty wages in the capital. Paying the Living Wage gives people fair reward for the work they do and helps to tackle poverty and inequality in one of the most unequal cities in the developed world.”