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Students make their voices count at Waltham Forest Accountability Assembly

Students from Leyton Sixth Form College played a vital part in making Waltham Forest's Assembly prior to the Local Elections in May 2018 a success. They have put together a video that illustrates their contribution to the Assembly, as well as their development into confident young leaders who are actively engaged in public life.

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A real Living Wage for NHS workers! (outside London)

Citizens UK is congratulating negotiators at the 13 Unions who last week struck a pay deal to give a welcome salary boost for 1 million NHS workers.

Under the deal every NHS worker in England will be paid at least £8.93 an hour (18p above the real living wage of £8.75 an hour), or £17,460 a year if they work full-time.

Here at Citizens UK we're warmly welcoming the move, although this does still mean that workers in London are not being uplifted to the £10.20 an hour London Living Wage. We'd like to see NHS bosses go further, so that everyone at the organisation gets a wage linked to living costs that is enough to support them on.

Matthew Bolton, incoming Citizens UK Executive Director, commented:

“This is fantastic news for NHS staff. The people keeping our hospitals running, working long hours under great pressure, and saving lives deserve a real Living Wage. Hundreds of thousands of workers outside London will get a real Living Wage and workers in London will receive a welcome pay rise.

However we’d ask that NHS bosses make a long term plan to extend this to all contract staff as well, and to take NHS workers in our capital beyond the £10.20 an hour needed for workers to live in dignity and security in London. This is a welcome first step towards decent pay for hard working public servants, we hope to see other government departments follow suit.”

Read more about the Living Wage rates and how the Living Wage Foundation's movement of 4300 employers is going beyond the Government minimum to pay the higher voluntary London Living Wage and real Living Wage rates.

 

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Citizens Action Wins Big Pay Rise for Cardiff Airport Workers... But Not Until 2020. We Don't Want Jam Tomorrow: We Want the Real Living Wage Today!

'Jammie Dodger' Action at Cardiff Airport Prompts Progress on the Real Living Wage 

By Jonathan Cox
Lead Organiser, Citizens Cymru Wales

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Photo: Rev Catherine Brobbey (Vale of Glamorgan Methodist Circuit) and Jess Maddocks offer packs of Jammie Dodgers to passengers entering Cardiff Airport.

Citizens Cymru Wales organised a Jammie Dodger-themed action at Cardiff Airport on May 1st 2018 to call on the Chief Executive, Deb Barber, to stop dodging the meeting she had promised local Citizens leaders before Christmas, to stop promising 'jam tomorrow', and instead deliver a Real Living Wage for Airport Workers by Living Wage Week in November 2018. 

The Jammie Dodger Action prompted the Airport to issue a statement pledging to introduce the Real Living Wage for its workers by April 2020 (with an interim increase in April 2019).  If this happens it could mean a pay rise of 12% for Security Workers based on the likely Real Living Wage figure in April 2020.  We understand that Deb Barber has asked to meet with the Living Wage Foundation's Accreditation Partner in Wales, Cynnal Cymru, which is another positive development. 

It is too early to start celebrating, especially as the Airport's workers will have received seven years worth of publicly-funded poverty pay before they finally get the Real Living Wage in April 2020.  Another two years is too long to wait, so we need to keep the pressure on for the Airport to accredit by Living Wage Week in November this year.  As Leanne Wood AM said when she raised our campaign at First Minister's Questions in the Senedd after the action, we need 'deeds, not warm words' from Cardiff Airport. 

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Citizens UK leaders shortlisted for Living Wage award

The 2018 Living Wage Champion Awards celebrate individuals and organisations that have made an outstanding contribution to the Living Wage movement. A number of leaders from our member institutions have been shortlisted.

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We call for repeal of the Lobbying Act

Citizens UK founder and Executive Director, Neil Jameson, responds to "The Chilling Reality: how the Lobbying Act is affecting charity & voluntary sector campaigning" report published today by the Sheila McKechnie Foundation. 

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A step closer to permanently affordable homes in Lewisham

Lewisham Citizens' leaders and campaigners have submitted plans for the first ever permanently affordable homes in the Borough to their local Council.

Members of Lewisham Citizens met and thanked Damien Egan, the new Mayor of Lewisham, for pledging to build 200 Community Land Trust homes over the next four years.

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More action on low paid in the charity sector needed

A new action plan released by the Living Wage Foundation calls on Government and charities to work together to tackle endemic low pay among workers in the charity sector.

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'More Kids, More Active, More Often' - Campaigning for Affordable Leisure in Cardiff

Isla Horton got angry when a change to the pricing system at leisure centres in Cardiff threatened her daughter's opportunities to do the activities she loved.  Her local church is part of the Llandaff Area Deanery, a member institution of Citizens Cymru Wales.  Here Isla tells the story of her campaign for affordable leisure for her children and thousands of others in the capital, and how community organising helped her get around the table to negotiate with decision-makers. 

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Photo: Lily Horton outside Western Leisure Centre, Ely

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Cardiff Citizens call on Cardiff City Football Club to go Living Wage

Cardiff Citizens Hit the Headlines with Living Wage Action at Cardiff City Football Club

by Jonathan Cox

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Photo: Ali Abdi and Richard Weaver (now Community Organisers with Citizens Cymru Wales) were both involved as leaders in the original Cardiff City FC Living Wage campaign in 2015.

We were all delighted to see Cardiff City get promoted to the Premier League.  We all know that football players earn high wages, and that winning promotion is a huge deal for the Club (who could benefit to the tune of £170 million), but what about the stewards and hospitality staff who make each matchday run smoothly - would they benefit from the Club's financial success?  There are growing number of accredited Living Wage football clubs in the Premier League - Cardiff are joining the footballing elite, but would they join an elite group of clubs (including Everton, West Ham and Chelsea) committed to the Living Wage? A team from Cardiff Citizens weren't prepared to leave it to chance...

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A Place to Pee! The Campaign for Better Public Toilets in Pontypridd

‘A Place to Pee’ – Improving Public Toilet Provision in Pontypridd

Rev Peter Lewis, Pontypridd Area Deanery

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This campaign came from my experience as a street pastor in Pontypridd town centre and seeing the problems caused during the night times at weekends when people have nowhere to go when they need to go! There are problems in terms of the welfare and security of people, and particularly for women. There is pollution and degradation of the environment, and there is pain and frustration for people in not being able to find anywhere to go.

 

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