School children from St Antony’s Catholic Primary School in Newham recorded a music video with Hollywood director, Saloum N’jie, in order to get key workers a real Living Wage.
Another Round of Applause
The music video for Another Round of Applause was premiered today (Monday, November 9) at the beginning of Living Wage Week, organised by the Living Wage Foundation in front of the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. He said: “A brilliant performance, a joy to listen to and so uplifting in these difficult times.”
The song was made to raise awareness of the incredible efforts of key workers throughout the Covid-19 pandemic to keep the country running. The school children hope to get key workers in the Covid-19 crisis a real Living Wage. Alongside this sales from the single on Bandcamp will be donated to Citizens UK’s Covid-19 relief fund, to support vulnerable communities hit hardest by the Covid-19 crisis.
Saloum N’jie, whose child is a student at St Antony’s, wanted to do something to help support the campaign. Saloum, who has been a director for film and TV, including Luther, Great Expectations, and Sherlock Holmes, said: "The simple fact that these children are trailblazers in their community for the living wage movement, has really touched me. Their efforts and success have inspired me to be a part of this campaign so key workers are paid their due."
St Antony's hard work to get a Living Wage for key workers
Teachers at the school Caroline Verdant and Nathan Chan, who came up with the idea, said: "For years, key workers have always been an invaluable part of our society, long before the arrival of Covid-19. While it has been great to praise and celebrate them, it is merely lip service if the pay they receive does not reflect their worth. Low income is the real national crisis that directly impacts many of our students and families within the school community.”
Caleb, a student at St Antony’s, said: “The Living Wage is important to me because sometimes I would ask for a game and my parents would always say: ‘Caleb, when I get paid and save enough I will get it for you.’ However, they need to pay rent and bills and tax. That’s why I’m campaigning for everybody to get the full Living Wage.”
St Antony’s started a Twitter poster campaign to #ThankKeyworkers in March, just one week after lockdown was announced. They have been supporting Citizens UK’s campaign since its launch in June 2020. They helped to create a TikTok dance – which saw people up and down the country recording dances to a campaign song also created by Nathan Chan.#LivingWage4KeyWorkers campaign since its launch in May 2020. They helped to create a TikTok dance – which saw people up and down the country recording dances to a campaign song also created by Nathan Chan.
Students and teachers at St Antony's have been campaigning for a real Living Wage for a number of years and have won a pay rise for hundreds of workers in Newham from accreditations including London City Airport and Tate & Lyle, whose accreditation was announced this week.
A real Living Wage for key workers
Since June pressure has been mounting on the Government to deliver a funding settlement that ensures those working in social care get paid a real Living Wage (£9.30 across the UK and £10.75 in London). This includes:
- A social media campaign (#WorthTheMoney) which asks people to share their care stories in order to show how important care is.
A Living Wage for Care Workers Charter which has been signed by hundreds of care, charity and faith leaders including Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham and Anne-Marie Plas, who started the UK’s Thursday clap for carers.
A petition signed by over 10,000 people.
- Care home blessings organised by religious figures across England and Wales.
Speaking about St Antony’s and the increasing pressure on the Government, Executive Director of Citizens UK, Matthew Bolton, said: “It’s amazing to see school children shining a spotlight on the issues of key workers earning under the real Living Wage. As we go into a second Covid-19 lockdown, and on Living Wage Week, it’s important that the people helping to keep this country are recognised for their hard work.”