Living Wage

Living Wage for Key Workers Campaign #LivingWage4KeyWorkers

Living Wage for Key Workers Campaign

The COVID19 lockdown restrictions have eased and the Thursday night clapping for our key workers seems like a distant memory to many, but for those working on the Living Wage for Key Workers campaign – that energy and appreciation has continued and has been injected into their work for Living Wages.

These celebrated workers account for 33% of the Welsh workforce which equates to nearly half a million people, all of whom have bills to pay and likely families to feed. Key workers are paid less per hour than the rest of the British workforce as a UK-wide average, and this is a pay gap that has been widening for some time. Key workers have similar demographic and educational characteristics to the rest of the workforce and have proved themselves essential within our daily lives and foundational economy yet are not rewarded with a living wage for this essential and undervalued work.

It is this injustice that sparked the Living Wage for Key Workers Campaign – an official campaign lead by Citizens UK and supported by the Living Wage Foundation who invite organisations that employ key workers to be supported through the accreditation process as a Living Wage employer and therefore uplifting the pay of anyone on below the Real Living Wage within these organisations.

Who are Key Workers?

Key workers are more likely to be women or from a BAME background. 58% of key workers are women and 14% are from a BAME background (compared to 12% across whole workforce). When you look at health and social care workers 79% of that workforce are female.

Across Wales, key workers make up a larger percentage of the workforce in rural and valleys local authority areas with over 40% of the workforce in Anglesey, Blaenau Gwent and Ceredigion employed as key workers.

Who are the lowest paid Key Workers?

The lowest paid key workers are in occupations in the health, social care, food and education sectors.

The Resolution Foundation highlights that 56% of frontline care workers in Wales earn below the Real Living Wage and those in care roles within the private sector are paid less than those employed by local authorities.  However, this is not to say that there is not more to be done by local authorities on taking action on fair pay for their frontline care workers.

What can you do about it?

You can get involved with the Living Wage for Key Workers campaign in Wales by visiting the sites of Citizens Cymru or the Living Wage Foundation to download campaign material and find out more.

You can sign this petition.

You can also raise queries with your local authority or any other key worker employer that you may be involved with on working towards Living Wage accreditation – to ensure that any worker employed by these bodies is paid enough to live a life of good quality on. They can be signposted to Cynnal Cymru as the accrediting body for Wales who are available to support them through this process.

It is important that we never forget the risk taken and sacrifices made by these key workers during a time of national crisis – our gratitude is important but more important is rewarding their hard work with a fair rate of pay and calling for a Living Wage for Key Workers.


*Statistics taken from Senedd Blog Research:
Characteristics of Key Workers
Key Worker Pay and Conditions

Turning Loud Claps into Living Wages

This title is taken from Doctoral researcher at Leeds University Business School Calum Carson’s article for the JESP European Social Policy Blog ‘Turning Loud Claps into Living Wages: Tackling In-work Poverty within a Post-COVID-19 Landscape.’ It well portrays the Living Wage Foundation and its supporters’ desire to turn the nation’s gratitude for key workers that have been putting themselves at considerable risk to deliver essential goods and services during lockdown, into tangible actions and results, rather than relying on gestures.

As suggested in the article, we want to make sure that this recognition of caring and essential work and the injustice of wide spread low pay in these sectors to ‘remain in the forefront of public debate.’ Read about the Living Wage Foundation’s focus on key workers.

Social Care and the Real Living Wage

Those that work in the social care sector have long been on the Living Wage Foundation’s radar. The strains of COVID-19 on the sector and key workers becoming more visible than ever has only served to highlight their hard work, often for poverty pay. We are beginning to see enquiries from care homes about becoming accredited employers including an accreditation this month from Gwyddfor Residential. They have already proved to be active supporters of the Living Wage and care workers rights on social media and in their actions, and we hope that other care homes and establishments will be able to follow suit.

This petition for a Real Living Wage for key workers is an opportunity to go a step further than clapping and work towards meaningful rewards. You can also write to your MP to demand a Living Wage for care workers.

Making Cardiff a Living Wage City

The Action Plan includes:
• Increasing the number of accredited Living Wage employers to 150 by 2022.
• Increasing the number of people working for accredited Living Wage employers to 48,000 by 2022.
• Encouraging major employers, iconic employers and ‘anchor’ organisations in Cardiff to become accredited Living Wage employers.
• Supporting small businesses to accredit through the Council’s Living Wage Accreditation Support Scheme.

There are already over 100 Cardiff Living Wage employers signed to the scheme.

If you are an accredited Living Wage employer in Cardiff please consider joining our LinkedIn group to build a community of fair pay employers in the city. Your primary contact for accreditation will shortly receive an e-mail inviting the organisation to join.

If you a Cardiff-based organisation that has not yet accredited and would like to do so please get in touch, we are at hand to support you through all stages of accreditation and Cardiff Council’s support scheme offers a reimbursement of fees up to the value of £720 if you accredit before March 2021. 

Cardiff Council Living Wage Accreditation Support Scheme

Bay Citizens Community Jobs Compact

The Bay Citizens’ Community Jobs Compact is a reciprocal agreement between the local community and the employer, co-produced by employers and communities together, and signed by major employers such as Ikea, ITV Wales, Careers Wales, and Welsh Parliament. It aims to combat such incidences by bringing local people and employers together to tackle poverty, unemployment and under-representation in the workforce.

The compact is an agreement with employers where signatories are obligated to accredit as a Living Wage employer, to recruit using name-blind and address-blind CVs and/or guarantee an interview to local residents who meet the criteria. Also, to introduce unconscious bias training for interviewers. The Compact will ensure all staff have the option of a permanent contract, and demonstrate opportunities for growth and development, for instance through internal career progression and mentoring.

If you are a Cardiff employer and would like to get involved, along with 15 other employers, that have signed the compact please get in touch with for more information.

Living Wage Week celebrated during Kidwelly launch with Burns Pet Nutrition


Burns Pet Nutrition kicked started the celebrations of The Living Wage Week by hosting the first west Wales event.

Local employers including Santander, Nationwide, Adecco, Delta Wellbeing, Carmarthenshire County Council, Castell Howell, Swansea Council for Voluntary Action, Trinity St Davids, Libra Energy & Estates Ltd andBevan Buckland LLP joined in the celebrations at the Parc y Bocs in Kidwelly.

The company is a champion of the Living Wage movement in Carmarthenshire, and the event emphasised the importance of employers adopting the Living Wage for their workers.

Speaking at the launch event, John Burns, Katie Roderick and Helen Mary Jones were passionate in their championing of the Living Wage. The team at Burns are inspirational advocates for paying a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work. The event was also an opportunity to hear worker testimonials of how earning fair wages has given them better choices.


Burns HR Manager Katie Roderick said that ‘it was a very straightforward accreditation process. One simple form’. Katie and her team have said they are very happy to share their experiences with other employers in the region who are looking to accredit.


Helen Mary Jones AM said:

“The organisation is the first champion of the Living Wage Movement in Carmarthenshire; what a privilege and a responsibility that brings and one that John Burns and his staff have taken on board with energy and commitment.

“Everyone here at Burns is a passionate advocate for paying a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work and we are delighted they hosted the event to help encourage and inspire as many employers in the region as possible to take up the mantle and follow their excellent example.

“Living Wage Week is about celebrating our Living Wage Employers – thanking them for making such a difference in people’s lives. It’s also about helping our friends and colleagues in other organisations who are also in favour of fair pay and want to learn as much as possible about what it means to become accredited Living Wage Employers.”

In addition to the avocation of the Living Wage implementation across Wales,  the 224 Living Wage accredited employers and celebrated the achievement in a statement of opinion in the Senedd.


About Living Wage Week

Living Wage week runs from 11th November to 17th November 2019 with events being held across the UK.

Cynnal Cymru is the Living Wage accreditation body for Wales. Find out more about Living Wage.[:]

Sustainable Academy Awards 2019 shortlist announced


We are delighted to announce the shortlist for the 2019 Sustainable Academy Awards – celebrating sustainability excellence, innovation and leadership from across Wales. 24 finalists across eight categories have been chosen by our expert judging panel to go through to the public vote.

The Awards recognise the amazing people, projects and initiatives that are contributing towards the seven National Well-being Goals and the five Ways of Working described in the Well-being Future Generations Act.

Our judging panel included Rhodri Thomas, Cynnal Cymru; Rhys Jones, Renewable UK; Angharad Davies on behalf of EDF Energy; Nia Lloyd, Keep Wales Tidy; Ruth Marks, WCVA; David Brown ARUP and Petranka Maleva, Future Generations Commissioners Office.

The judges were particularly looking for projects and initiatives that clearly delivered on the principles of the Well-being of Future Generations Act as well as looking for examples that captured the imagination by going above and beyond.

Public Vote is now open!

Now it is over to you the public to help decide who will be this years winners. The public vote will count towards 60% of the overall score and the winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff on Thursday 28 November.

We hope you will be inspired by by our 24 finalists and please take the time to vote for your favourites in each category.

You can vote for your favourites until Wednesday 06 November.


Outstanding Renewable Energy – Sponsored by Welsh Government

  • BCB International Ltd – FIREDRAGON as a sustainable Ethanol based solid fuel
  • Innogy – Mynydd y Gwair Wind Farm
  • Egni Coop – Community owned solar

Outstanding Social Enterprise

  • Credu Charity Ltd – SeaQuest Coastal Science and Education Programme
  • Greenstream Flooring
  • RCMA Social Enterprise – Real Food! Real Life!

Sustainable Business

  • The Digital Pattern Library – accessible, sustainable fashion for all
  • Dyfi Distillery – Bringing gin production close to home
  • Oseng-Rees reflection – artisan interiors and architectural installations

Sustainable Community – Sponsored EDF

  • Sustainable Community at Cardiff Met University
  • Under the Bridge – Milford Youth Matters
  • Recycle4charity – Pembrokeshire Care, Share and Give

Sustainable Education or Training

  • Black Mountains Land Use Partnership – Mountain and Moorland Ambassadors
  • Severn Wye Energy Agency – Our Future’s People
  • Size of Wales & WCIA – MockCOP

Sustainable Procurement or Supply Chain – Sponsored ARUP

  • ARIA Bridal – Designing in sustainability from the start
  • Aberystwyth University – BEACON More taste, less salt, healthier lives
  • WRAP Cymru – Public Sector Sustainable Procurement Project

Sustainable Venue or Space – Sponsored by CECA Wales

  • Newydd Housing Association / Eggseeds -The Solar Powered Bench
  • LINC Cymru – Growing Green Spaces
  • SPECIFIC, Swansea University / BIPVco – Active Buildings

Sustainability Champion

  • Rachel Roberts
  • Meleri Davies
  • Paul Allen


Living Wage Buildings to Create Well-paid Job Opportunities

[:en]The Living Wage Foundation and its supporters are celebrating the establishment of the first Living Wage Building in the United Kingdom -International House in Brixton.

All tenants based within the co-working building are obliged to pay at least the London Living Wage to their employees and contractors.

The 11-storey block is owned by Lambeth Council and run by 3Space. The former council office re-opened in late 2018 as one of London’s biggest affordable co-working building for new and growing businesses, social enterprises and charities, with a focus on design, creativity and innovation.

A fantastic enterprise community is being built at International House – from high growth creative tech companies Gravity Sketch, Resi, and KYND, to local cultural charities including Photofusion, and Business Launchpad, a not for profit supporting young entrepreneurs from disadvantaged backgrounds. Once fully occupied, the building has the potential to support 850 jobs.

The venture is being supported by accredited local authority Lambeth Council. As a council, they are focused on developing new employment opportunities in emerging sectors, with typically better pay, to support young people and encourage entrepreneurship and business skills.

In support of this focus, Lambeth Council is rolling out new co-working buildings across the borough, all of which specify that tenants pay the London Living Wage to employees.

Katherine Chapman, Director of the Living Wage Foundation, said:

“We’re delighted to see International House become the country’s first Living Wage Building. Lambeth Council has shown real leadership in asking businesses based within its buildings to pay the London Living Wage. We know the huge impact that supportive local authorities like Lambeth can have in driving Living Wage take-up. Across the UK many councils are now not only accrediting as Living Wage employers but also using their convening power to help spread Living Wage accreditation through local businesses and supply chains.”


The Living Wage Buildings project is part of Living Wage Places, launched by the Living Wage Foundation, which formally recognises and celebrates the places that are leading the way on the real Living Wage.

For more information about the Living Wage Places scheme, contact Clare Goff, Living Wage Places project manager at the Living Wage Foundation:[:]

Real Living Wage Accreditation for Aberystwyth University

[:en]Aberystwyth University has been officially accredited as a Real Living Wage employer.

The news was announced by the Living Wage Foundation at the beginning of Living Wage Week 2018.

Aberystwyth University is one of 174 employers in Wales who have now signed up voluntarily to pay the Real Living Wage.

The Vice-Chancellor of Aberystwyth University, Professor Elizabeth Treasure, said: “Aberystwyth University is one of the biggest employers in Mid Wales, with more than 2,000 full-time and part-time staff. We value the contribution they make to all areas of campus life, and their dedication and commitment underpins the success of our institution. Our decision to adopt the Real Living Wage reflects our principles and values as an ethical employer, and we are now working to support responsible employment practices throughout our supply chain.”

Following a decision by its Council, the University began the process of paying the Real Living Wage to staff on lower pay scales in April 2018 while the institution submitted its accreditation application to the Living Wage Foundation.

Mohamed Cheggaf, who works as a porter at the University, is among those to benefit from the higher rate.

“Receiving the Living Wage rate has made a big difference. The cost of living is increasing all the time, with shopping and other bills becoming more expensive. Now that I am earning the Living Wage, paying these bills is easier and life is better for me and my family,” said Mohamed, who has also learnt to speak Welsh since moving to Aberystwyth.

Set by the Living Wage Foundation, the Living Wage is calculated on the earnings an employee needs in order to meet the basic costs of living and is higher than the UK Government’s National Living Wage.

Launching the Living Wage Week Wales in Cardiff on Monday 5 November, First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones announced that the Real Living Wage rate outside London would rise from £8.75 per hour to £9 per hour.

Living Wage Foundation Director, Tess Lanning, said: “Today’s new Living Wage rates will provide a boost for thousands of workers throughout Wales. Responsible businesses know that the government minimum is not enough to live on. Employers that pay the real Living Wage enable their workers to live a life of dignity, supporting them to pay off debts and meet the pressures of rising bills.

“In particular we want to see local councils, universities, football clubs, bus companies and the other major public and private sector employers in every city commit to become real Living Wage employers. When they do, thousands of people get a pay rise, but other local employers also follow their lead. If more of these institutions step up, we can start to build true Living Wage places.”[:cy]Mae Prifysgol Aberystwyth wedi’i hachredu’n swyddogol fel cyflogwr Cyflog Byw Go Iawn.

Cyhoeddwyd y newyddion gan y Sefydliad Cyflog Byw ddydd Llun 5 Tachwedd 2018, ar ddechrau Wythnos Cyflog Byw 2018.

Mae Prifysgol Aberystwyth yn un o 174 o gyflogwyr yng Nghymru sydd wedi gwneud penderfyniad gwirfoddol i dalu’r Cyflog Byw Go Iawn.

Dywedodd yr Athro Elizabeth Treasure, Is-Ganghellor Prifysgol Aberystwyth: “Prifysgol Aberystwyth yw un o gyflogwyr mwyaf Canolbarth Cymru ac mae gennym dros 2,000 o staff llawn amser a rhan amser. Rydym yn gwerthfawrogi eu cyfraniad i bob agwedd o fywyd campws, ac mae eu hymroddiad yn sail i lwyddiant ein sefydliad. Mae ein penderfyniad i fabwysiadu’r Cyflog Byw Go Iawn yn adlewyrchu ein gwerthoedd a’n  hegwyddorion fel cyflogwr moesegol, ac rydym yn gweithio nawr tuag at gefnogi arferion cyflogaeth gyfrifol drwy ein cadwyn gyflenwi.”

Yn dilyn penderfyniad gan y Cyngor, fe ddechreuodd y Brifysgol ar y broses o dalu’r Cyflog Byw Go Iawn i staff ar raddfeydd cyflog is ym mis Ebrill 2018 tra bod cais y sefydliad am achrediad swyddogol yn cael ei gyflwyno i’r Sefydliad Cyflog Byw.

Mae Mohamed Cheggaf, sy’n gweithio fel porthwr yn y Brifysgol, ymhlith y rhai sy’n elwa o’r gyfradd uwch.

“Mae derbyn y gyfradd Cyflog Byw wedi gwneud gwahaniaeth mawr imi. Mae’r gost o fyw yn cynyddu drwy’r amser, gyda biliau siopa a biliau eraill yn codi’n  gyson. Dwi nawr yn derbyn y Cyflog Byw, ac felly mae talu’r biliau yn haws ac mae bywyd yn well i fi a’n nheulu,” meddai Mohamed, sydd hefyd wedi bod yn dysgu Cymraeg ers symud i Aberystwyth ddeuddeng mlynedd yn ôl.

Caiff y Cyflog Byw ei osod gan y Sefydliad Cyflog Byw ac mae’n seiliedig ar yr enillion sydd ei hangen ar weithiwr i dalu costau byw elfennol. Mae’r gyfradd yn uwch na Chyflog Byw Cenedlaethol Llywodraeth y DU.

Wrth lansio Wythnos Cyflog Byw Cymru 2018 ar ddydd Llun 5 Tachwedd, cyhoeddodd Prif Weinidog Cymru Carwyn Jones y bydd cyfradd y Cyflog Byw Go Iawn y tu allan i Lundain yn cynyddu o £8.75 yr awr i £9 yr awr.

Dywedodd Cyfarwyddwr y Sefydliad Cyflog Byw, Tess Lanning: “Bydd y cyfraddau Cyflog Byw newydd yn rhoi hwb i filoedd o weithwyr ledled Cymru. Mae busnesau cyfrifol yn ymwybodol nad yw cyflog isafswm y llywodraeth yn ddigon i fyw arno. Mae cyflogwyr sy’n talu’r Cyflog Byw Go Iawn yn galluogi eu gweithwyr i fyw bywyd urddasol, ac yn eu cynorthwyo i dalu dyledion a thalu biliau.

“Rydym am weld cynghorau lleol, prifysgolion, clybiau pêl-droed, cwmnïau bysiau a chyflogwyr yn y sectorau preifat a chyhoeddus ym mhob dinas yn ymrwymo i fod yn gyflogwyr Cyflog Byw Go Iawn. O ganlyniad, bydd miloedd yn derbyn cynnydd cyflog, a bydd cyflogwyr lleol eraill yn dilyn eu hesiampl. Pan fydd y sefydliadau hyn yn camu tuag at y cyfeiriad yma, gallwn ddechrau adeiladu ar leoliadau Cyflog Byw Go Iawn.”[:]

Innovation Shorts | Brecon Carreg aims to be Carbon Neutral by 2020

[:en]Brecon Carreg is natural Welsh mineral water from the Brecon Beacons National Park. The company understands that to secure their position as a leader, that sustainability credentials are important and therefore have developed ambitious sustainability targets for 2020. Their focus on sustainability has meant that Brecon Carreg has received accreditation by the Ethical Company Organisation for the second year running, placing them in the top five UK ethical bottles water brands.

Brecon Carreg are focused on three areas – protecting nature, minimising their carbon footprint and supporting people and society which are connected to the three pillars of sustainability, environmental, social and cultural sustainability.



Brecon Carreg water is sourced from two sources and two springs in the Brecon Beacons National Park. Allowing wildlife to flourish, Brecon Carreg safeguards the natural resources to guarantee pure mineral water today and for future generations. In co-operation with the local authorities and national park administration, Brecon Carreg are putting in place protection and prevention action to sustainable protect the sources and the catchment are to prevent any risk of pollution.  Their most recent environmental project is a first in UK. Working with BeeOdiversity they will use the ecosystem of the bees to measure the quality of the environment and biodiversity making recommendations for the future. Two bee hives (around 50,000 bees) have been installed and resident Brecon Carreg beekeeper, Bill will ensure that they are disease free so they can lead a happy life and continue pollinating. Samples across an area of approximately 700 hectares will be collected via the bees and the goal is to assess and improve the biodiversity within the area.



Reducing their Carbon Footprint

Brecon Carreg aim to be carbon neutral by 2020. Through the comprehensive analysis of the life cycle, they have identified the aspects that contribute significantly to their carbon footprint and are working to reduce those areas. Green energy is used to power their sites and over the last ten years, Brecon Carreg have reduced the amount of energy used to produce one litre of bottled water by 34%. All of the plastic bottles are 100% recyclable and they continue to light weight their packaging. Initiatives such as palletising their bottles more effectively and a new IT system means they have been able to reduce the number of delivery vehicle journeys made every year. Measures are also being taken to reduce their carbon footprint through new drainage and purification system being installed to process the water. Spadel achieved their target to reduce the carbon footprint by 20% between 2010 and 2015 (15% measures internally and 5% carbon offsetting). Brecon Carreg has received the “CO2 Neutral” label for its neutrality on scope 1 and 2 (electricity, gas and fleet). The target for 2020 aims to achieve the full carbon emissions neutrality for scope 1, 2 and 3 (which includes water and all travel).



People and Society

As a socially responsible company, Brecon Carreg take into account the social dimension of their activities.  Brecon Carreg is an accredited Living Wage employer and aim to build an organisation where employees enjoy work and are constantly encouraged and stimulated to improve their performance. Brecon Carreg gained 87% in the last People Performance survey Index and supports employees journey towards a healthier lifestyle through subsidised gym membership, a Bike2Work scheme and complimentary entry to running events.

Living Wage

Based in the Brecon Beacons National Park, Brecon Carreg are proud of their Welsh heritage. Throughout the year they hosted open days to build relationships with local authorities and communities. The organisation supports key campaigns such as #RunRecyle with Recycle for Wales and work with Public Health Wales on the #QuenchYourThirst campaign.[:]

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