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You are here: News » Universities Prepare For Showdown With Unions Over Pay Rate For Low Paid Employees



Universities Prepare For Showdown With Unions Over Pay Rate For Low Paid Employees

Published 18th Mar 2012


Last Week the National Union of Students and UNISON came together to launch a new campaign – to ‘name and shame’ universities that fail to award all staff the living wage.

The union duo said that all staff employed by universities or by private sub-contractors on campuses should be paid at least the minimum national living wage of £7.20 an hour or £8.30 in London.

The NUS and UNISON said that they will aim to identify those universities which fail to award the living wage to the lowest paid staff.

This is proposed to take the form of a league table whereby universities will be ranked according to pay rate for those employed by universities and sub contractors on campus.

This table will also show the gap between the lowest and highest paid staff employed at universities. 

NUS VP for society and citizenship, Dannie Grufferty said: “There is clearly an inherent injustice in the average vice-chancellor getting paid more than 17 times more than a minimum wage employee on their campus.

“Colleges and universities are a community and everyone within that community needs to be treated with dignity and that means paying them a wage they can live on for their work.

“The difference between minimum wage and a living wage is the difference between constant money worries and being able to make ends meet.  It also makes sense for employers who’ll see a rise in productivity and greater retention of staff.

“Employers at colleges and universities have six months to get their house in order before we name and shame those that allow such shocking disparities to continue.”

The NUS and UNISON are set to launch the ‘Living Wage Campaign’ this month which will be supporting students and student unions with developing their own local level campaigns to achieve living wage status for the low paid employees of universities.

Recently Manchester University became the first institution to achieve success from the campaign, winning the living wage for all full time staff on campus.

To find out more visit: www.alivingwage.co.uk where resources are available to help with a campaign for the living wage at university.



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