Malcolm Grant, Provost of UCL, has today given a firm commitment to pay the London Living Wage to all contract staff at University College London. The decision will be implemented over the next two years as contracts are reviewed. This is a huge victory for the Living Wage campaign at UCL, which has involved students, academics, cleaners and catering staff. The campaign estimates that approximately 200 cleaners and catering staff are due to benefit from the introduction of the Living Wage of £7.85 an hour, many of whom are currently paid £5.80 an hour (the national minimum wage). The decision follows coverage of the campaign in the Evening Standard last week, and the decision of UCL academics to write publicly to Mr Grant urging him to pay the Living Wage.
You can read the BBC’s coverage here.
UCL joins a growing group of Living Wage Employers in higher education, including Queen Mary, London School of Economics, Birkbeck, Goldsmiths, SOAS, London Business School, Institute of Education and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Living Wage employers in other sectors include HSBC, Barclays, KPMG, the Olympic Delivery Authority and the Greater London Authority, among many others.
There is also significant news from Islington, where 150 cleaning staff will be offered a contract with the council and a guaranteed Living Wage of £7.85 an hour, after a decision to bring the service in-house rather than renew the current cleaning contract. The contract is worth £2.3million and will be brought in-house without any additional cost to taxpayers. More details here.