John Moores joins ‘growing number’ of universities gaining accreditation as living wage employers

UNISON has welcomed the news that Liverpool John Moores University has become an accredited living wage employer.

The university, which employs around 2,500 staff, received accreditation from the Living Wage Foundation after committing itself to paying permanent employees and third-party contractors at least the living wage £8.25 an hour.

“I am pleased that Liverpool JMU has become a living wage accredited employer, said UNISON branch secretary Andy Beech.

“This is something that UNISON applauds and we encourage other branches to campaign for. I hope that this inspires all other institutions across the UK to join the growing number of universities that are gaining accreditation.”

The living wage is a voluntary rate, calculated on the basic cost of living, and is updated during Living Wage Week each November.

It is different from the government’s newly introduced “national living wage” of £7.20 an hour, which is a new mandatory minimum wage for workers aged 25 and over.

Professor Philip Vickerman, the university’s executive director to the vice chancellor for strategic initiatives and enhancements, said: “This is a significant step for LJMU because becoming accredited as a living wage employer means that our staff have the opportunity to earn enough to provide for themselves and their families.

“It is important for us as a large employer in the city to welcome the new hourly rate and encourage other organisations to do the same, especially in highlighting the benefits, which include boosting staff morale, increasing productivity and job fulfilment, and satisfying stakeholders that employees are always paid a fair wage.”

UNISON’s current pay claim in higher education calls for no employee working at a UK university to be paid less than the living wage.