Last night People’s Health Trust was celebrated for its leadership in helping to end low pay in the Voluntary and Community sector.
The Trust was presented the Living Wage Friendly Funder award at the Living Wage Champion Awards sponsored by KPMG, Aviva and City of London, which recognises Living Wage employers and individuals that have made great contributions to communities and industries by implementing and celebrating the Living Wage.
People’s Health Trust has been a Living Wage employer since 2013. In the last two and a half years, it has brought together funding organisations and supported the creation of the Living Wage Friendly Funder scheme which encourages funders to only grant-fund posts at Living Wage rates.
The Trust’s work has led to 33 major grant-makers - including Youth Music, Islington Council, Big Lottery Fund and Comic Relief to join together under the Friendly Funder scheme, and contribute over £806m in grants to 20,000 charities whose workers are now paid the Living Wage.
The Living Wage Friendly Funder Committee was formalised one year ago and the Trust’s Chief Executive, John Hume, was elected Chair. A Living Wage Friendly Funder network has now been developed, which ensures that those not on the Committee have the opportunity to come together to discuss low-pay in the sector. This is helping to widen the discussion beyond funders and into broader action that can be taken.
A major achievement of the Living Wage Friendly Funders has been the development and launch of the Low Pay in the Charity Sector report which shows that low pay in the sector is endemic, worse than in any other sector, and that marginalised groups such as minority ethnic people, disabled people, women and part-time workers experience the lowest pay.
The report has attracted attention from a wide range of bodies, including the Charity Commission.
Accepting the Award on behalf of the Trust, John Hume - Chief Executive, said:
“We are proud to be recognised for our efforts in working to combat low pay in the charity sector. We know that over a quarter of charity workers are paid below the real Living Wage, with women, part-time workers, young people and people from minority ethnic and refugee backgrounds affected the most.
“We need to be part of the solution and act now. We would like to thank those funders who have stepped up and made sure that through their grants, we are a step closer to addressing chronic low pay in the charity sector.”
Through its work, People’s Health Trust supports citizens to take greater control over what happens in their lives by investing in people-led approaches that help to address the underlying causes of health inequalities. We know work is a social determinant of health, and that good and well-paid work is a precursor to improved health.
Low pay does not need to be the norm. Now is the time for the Voluntary and Charity sector to make a stand.
Will you join us?