Living wage for Milton Keynes

Council leader Pete Marland
Council leader Pete Marland

Milton Keynes Council is set to become a Living Wage employer, after adopting a policy for all staff to be paid a minimum of £7.65 per hour.

The change was agreed unanimously at the council cabinet meeting on Monday evening, and will mean staff are paid considerably more than the national minimum wage of £6.31 per hour.

Council leader Councillor Peter Marland told the Citizen what the move means.

He said: “This is now council policy, and makes paying the Living Wage the overarching goal of the council.

“There will be a support paper in the next couple of months, and then we will first employ all our workforce paying them at least the Living Wage, and then make it part of our procurement policy so that in future contracts awarded to outside companies will see their staff paid the Living Wage too.”

The council heard from the Citizens:mk, the alliance of community organisations which has led the Living Wage campaign and gained support from all party leaders.

Pastry chef Tracy Schembre described what being paid the Living Wage meant for her and her family.

She said: “Me and my husband both work full-time to make ends meet, so family trips to the cinema and bowling have been few and far between.

“Now I have the Living Wage we can put that extra money aside so once a month we can now have a family day out without worry, which in turn has brought our family unit closer and happier together.”