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New ‘Camden minimum wage’ announced for council workers

Cllr Sarah Hayward. Picture: Polly Hancock. Cllr Sarah Hayward. Picture: Polly Hancock.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014
1:48 PM

Camden Council says it will exceed commitments made to pay all its staff the London Living Wage (LLW) by vowing to raise the salaries of its lowest employees to a new ‘Camden minimum wage’.

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The lowest paid members of Camden Council staff are set to see their wages increase from £16,413 to £18,297, going up to a further £20,000 in 2018.

Although already cash-strapped, the council says the cost of implementing the proposal is “very low” with the first pay rise expected to add an extra £60,000 a year to the council’s wage bill.

As a result of the proposals, 43 council staff will see their salaries rise to the new minimum wage.

It is part of efforts to ensure the gap between the lowest and highest paid remains below a ratio of 1:10.

Currently, the highest paid employee is the council’s deputy chief executive, who receives about £163,000 p.a.

Cllr Sarah Hayward, leader of the council, said: “Addressing low pay is a key part of tackling inequality across Camden.

“This is a clear signal that Camden is leading the way in implementing fair pay for some of the lowest paid public sector workers who day in, day out work hard to deliver quality services for residents and businesses.

“While becoming one of the first Council’s to be accredited by the Living Wage Foundation it is only right that we continue to build on this success.”

Cllr Theo Blackwell, cabinet member for finance and technology policy, added: “We deliver first class public services and are using our position as a major employer in Camden to demonstrate the value of paying employees a decent wage for the jobs that they carry out.

“The cost of implementing this proposal is very low in comparison to our overall salary budget, but this will help our lower paid employees with London’s high cost of living.”

In 2012, Camden Council became an accredited by the Living Wage Foundation as a LLW employer.

Since this date, all directly paid staff are paid above the LLW, while 96.3 per cent of all contracts have been awarded where contractors are paid at or above the LLW.

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