Contribute to a Living Wage strategy for Merthyr Tydfil

Economy A bar tender prepares a drink
NewsAugust 10th, 2016

The Bevan Foundation is seeking the views of employers and workers in Merthyr Tydfil to find out what should be done to increase the number of people earning at least the voluntary Living Wage, currently £8.25 an hour, in the borough.

Around 6,000 people – a quarter of the workforce – are paid less than this rate, which is calculated to be the amount needed for a basic but acceptable standard of living. Increases in productivity and spending in local businesses, as well as easier staff recruitment and fairer pay are just some of the reasons why we are asking employers in Merthyr Tydfil to pay the Living Wage.

The Bevan Foundation’s Director, Dr Victoria Winckler, said: “It is very worrying that one in four workers in Merthyr, like other parts of Wales, is not paid enough for a decent standard of living. Not only does this mean that their income is low, it means that they have less to spend in our local shops and cafes.”MT1

Thanks to generous funding from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust and Oxfam Cymru, over the past few months we
have been speaking to business and community leaders throughout the borough to determine how Merthyr Tydfil should tackle the problem of low pay. We have published a series of briefings to inform local employers and workers about the voluntary Living Wage, and are inviting them to share their experiences via a survey.

Nisreen Mansour, who is leading the project, said: 

“Many of Merthyr’s big public sector employers such as the health board and the council, as well as some private sector employers like Nationwide and Miller Argent, have committed to pay the Living Wage, and we would like all employers in Merthyr Tydfil to follow their lead.

“The Living Wage is about more than just pay – it’s about the principle that people should not be paid less than they can afford to live on. We think that all employers in Merthyr Tydfil should take stock of their pay structures and consider what they can do to make sure their lowest paid workers receive the Living Wage.

“And the benefits also go beyond a pay increase for some of the borough’s lowest paid. People will have more money to spend in Merthyr Tydfil, they’ll be less reliant on social security and employers can benefit from increased productivity and better staff recruitment and retention.”

To complete the employer survey, please click here, and to download and share the briefings, click here.


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