Zoe Woolacott | 31 May 2022

Living Wage Foundation responds to cost of living crisis

The recommended level of the voluntary Living Wage will be presented earlier this year, in response to the steep rise in the cost of living, according to plans recently announced by the Living_Wage_Foundation. The rate calculated by the foundation, sometimes known as the ‘real living wage’, is an independent estimate of the wage needed for a socially acceptable standard of living. The current estimate is £9.90 an hour outside London and £11.05 an hour in London for workers aged 18 and over, which is higher than the current statutory National_Living_Wage_(NLW) of £9.50.

Employers accredited by the Living Wage Foundation had until 1 May 2022 to implement the rate that was announced in November 2021. However, the announcement from the Living Wage Foundation confirms that the next estimate will be issued two months early in September 2022 alongside a recommendation that employers implement the uplift as soon as possible in response to the cost of living crisis.

The influence of the voluntary living wage has grown since the pandemic started. There are now over 10,000 accredited living wage employers  across the UK – a sharp increase from around 6,000 in 2019. This group includes banks, manufacturers and retailers such as Nationwide, Nestlé and IKEA. Earlier this year, John_Lewis_Partnership announced its intention to pay the voluntary wage nationwide in 2022.