Ash Denham MSP has written to the City of Edinburgh Council to ask if and when it intends to commit to moving the Capital towards becoming a Living Wage City.
Such an announcement would follow in the footsteps of Scotland’s only current aspiring Living Wage City, Dundee, which made the move in 2019 after launching a city-wide action plan in collaboration with Real Living Wage Scotland to drive uptake of the accreditation scheme.
The Real Living Wage scheme is one supported by the Scottish Government and encourages businesses to pay their employees and all regular third-party contracted staff a wage which at a minimum has been independently calculated based on living costs.
Now the MSP for Edinburgh Eastern, who has been a champion for the Real Living Wage within her constituency and made it a key re-election commitment to encourage more businesses to sign up, has requested a timescale for when it is hoped the City will move towards becoming Scotland’s second Living Wage City.
Ms. Denham said:
“This scheme makes a real difference because instead of employees struggling to make ends meet every month being paid the real living wage helps to lift more people out of in work poverty.
“The benefits to employers cannot be overstated too as evidence shows paying employees the real living wage leads to increased productivity, better morale, and lower sickness absence.
“For these reasons and others I have worked to champion businesses in my constituency who have become accredited Living Wage employers and I held an event in Parliament in February 2020 (pictured) to meet local employers and their employees to hear first hand how this scheme has improved their lives.
“My office wrote to the council in 2019 stating that I would fully support making Edinburgh an aspiring Real Living Wage City and I am optimistic we are now close to realising that ambition. I have written to the Council to ask if any timescales have been put in place to move towards this objective and have offered to do anything I can to support it.”