Work alone is no longer a guaranteed route of poverty (Joseph Rowntree Foundation, 2004) and one in seven users of food banks live in working households (Trussell Trust, 2019). In Work Poverty (IWP) is a major concern in the UK and the provision of quality jobs and a decent standard of living has become a key focus following reports such as the Taylor Review (2017).
In the UK, the Government’s National Wage (NW) and National Living Wage (NLW) are aimed to reduce risk of falling into poverty but are not considered to be sufficient especially in light of rise in the costs of living (Citizens Advice Bureau, 2019). The introduction of the voluntary “Real Living Wage” (RLW) by Citizens UK and the Living Wage Foundation is designed to address this insufficiency and offer a “decent pay” and has been introduced in some major cities in the UK.
The aim of the study is to explore how the Real Living Wage movement might help tackle issues around in work poverty in areas such as Wales and the South Wales Valleys region.
In collaboration with Citizens Cymru, a civil society organisation, I aim to explore:
- What factors contribute to the patterns of Living Wage accreditation in Wales
- What approaches are used in other regions that can be learnt from to further promote the RLW
- How can the tools and approaches used by civil society organisations be harnessed to promote voluntary regulation
- What a Living Wage economy might look like in the South Wales Valleys?
This project will contribute to knowledge on:
- How RLW could be introduced in different areas
- Potential benefits and challenges RLW from perspectives of regional stakeholders.
- Enable a development of a Welsh regional specific model of RLW introduction.
- Feed in to the developing strategy for Cardiff’s Living Wage City and the Welsh Fair Wage Agenda.