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​There are currently 4.8million jobs below the real Living Wage in the UK (1 in 6 workers).

Posted-on April 2022 By Amy Bates

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Inflation has been increasing in recent months, causing real pay growth rates to decrease.

On 12th April 2022, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) published its latest assessment of how earnings compare to the current record rates of inflation. Workers have seen the greatest drop in real pay since 2013, with recent increases to the Minimum and National Living Wages at risk of being wiped out by inflation.​

There has been a drop of 1.8% in regular wages and this fall marked the steepest decline since August to October 2013.

The Living Wage Foundation, an independent charity, stated that the National Living Wage needed to be increased by £800 per year in addition to the 6.6 percent increase implemented on April 1 to bring salaries in line with the cost of living.

  • Workers paid the National Living Wage need almost an extra £800 per year to bring earnings in line with the real Living Wage;

  • The difference could pay for 13 weeks of food, or 10 weeks of housing costs;

  • Workers in London paid the National Living Wage need over £3,000 extra a year to bring earnings in line with the London Living Wage;

  • The difference could pay for nearly a year (43 weeks) of food bills, or 5 months (22 weeks) of housing costs.

​​As inflation reaches the highest levels seen in decades, new data from the Living Wage Foundation reveals that today's National Living Wage increase to £9.50 per hour still leaves the UK's lowest-paid workers hundreds of pounds short of a wage that covers the cost of living, and thousands below for workers in London. In the United Kingdom, the real Living Wage is £9.90, and in London, it is £11.05 per hour.

According to the analysis, a UK worker earning the National Living Wage would need an additional £780 per year to be paid the true Living Wage. This difference, as per national estimates, equals to 3 months' worth of food or 10 weeks' worth of housing costs.

Workers in London paid the National Living Wage need over £3,000 extra a year to bring earnings in line with the London Living Wage; The difference could pay for nearly a year (43 weeks) of food bills, or 5 months (22 weeks) of housing costs.

Katherine Chapman, Director, Living Wage Foundation, said:

“The National Living Wage rise is welcome news for low paid workers, but it remains significantly lower than a real Living Wage based on what it actually costs to live. Even before the cost of living crisis, millions of workers and families were struggling to stay afloat.

With bills continuing to rise, many more are now at risk of falling into financial hardship. If we’re to weather this storm we need employers to take action now, step up, and provide a real Living Wage that meets every day needs, giving security and stability for both employers and workers.”