Ealing Living Wage Alliance have joined Unison in fighting for the church to give a living wage

By Joe Acklam

13th Feb 2023 | Local News

A view of the Church of Saint Mary in South Ealing from the southwest. Photo: Doyle of London.
A view of the Church of Saint Mary in South Ealing from the southwest. Photo: Doyle of London.

Ealing Living Wage Alliance have joined Unison in calling on the Church of England and Catholic Church to institute a living wage for their employees. 

Unison wrote to the heads of both the Church of England and Catholic Church in December 2022 to urge them to honour their 2012 pledge to give all of their 6,800 staff in Church schools a living wage, which their research says less than 50% of their employers are accredited as paying. 

Ealing Living Wage Alliance have publicly joined this pursuit, protesting on 8th February and using social media to raise awareness for the issue. 

In the letters, UNISON urges the Archbishops of Canterbury, York, and Westminster "to practise what you preach and remember that Christmas is about giving to others". 

"It's in your gift to ensure church school staff receive a wage that's fair and in accordance with Christian values. 

"This financial lifeline could make the difference between them feeding their families or facing a bleak new year." 

In 2012 the churches signed up to give Church school staff at least £10.90 per hour and £11.95 in London, but this is yet to happen across the board. 

The letters also demanded that private companies contracted by schools give staff full sick pay to ensure they are treated the same as their directly employed colleagues. 

UNISON head of education Mike Short said: "Churches understand the devastating impact the cost-of-living crisis is having on low-paid school staff. But it's disappointing their supportive words haven't yet been backed up with action.   

"Many workers are rightly dismayed promises made a decade ago by both Churches have still not been honoured. Church leaders must ensure their schools follow through on this important pledge.  

"At this time of dire hardship, a real living wage boost would provide a much-needed financial lifeline to families living on the edge. Churches do really important work supporting their local communities, but they must make sure their employees receive fair pay." 


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