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5 Successful Companies are Leeching £1 billion from the Taxpayer to Subsidise Low Pay




Dave Lewis (CEO Tesco)

Andy Clark (CEO Asda)

Mike Coupe (CEO Sainsbury’s)

David Potts (CEO Morrisons)

Simon Wolfson (CEO Next)

                                                                                                                                                                  12th April 2015

Dear CEOs,

We are shocked by new research from Citizens UK that finds low pay costing us taxpayers £11 billion in working benefits and tax credits.

It’s a scandal that your companies, including some of the largest and most profitable in the country, count on the public to prop up lousy pay to your workers and that, in some astonishing cases, you receive more in public subsidy than you contribute in corporation tax to the public purse.

Over 5 million people struggle to get by on less than a Living Wage and over 500,000 are directly employed by you. They deserve the chance to stand on their own two feet and taxpayers shouldn’t be left footing the bill for a profitable company’s poor pay.

There are now over 1,300 accredited Living Wage employers including 20 FTSE 100s. They are proving that there is a better way than low pay, bad jobs and a huge bill for the taxpayer.

Your five companies alone cost us £1 billion in public subsidy each year. That’s enough for 150 new schools or 4 million ambulance call outs and, staggeringly, is as much as your entire collective contribution in corporation tax.

Paying the Living Wage wouldn’t see your public subsidy eliminated, but it would be a major and affordable step towards balanced, responsible business.

We call on you to commit to paying the Living Wage as a way to properly reward your workers and re-balance your responsibilities to the public in a way that is fair and reasonable.

Who's signing

Susan friel
Andy Chambers
Froilan Legaspi
Murray McLean
Ben Coode-Adams
Soledad Muñiz
Caroline Ibbott
Ruth Hayes
Paul Regan
Jonathan Regan
matthew bolton
Ian Wilson
Gill Robbins
Sahar Al-Faifi
Martin Johnstone
Jon Ward
Mary Flannery
Amy Hooper
188 signatures

Will you sign?

Showing 200 reactions

  • Susan friel
    signed 2015-04-12 10:35:04 +0100
  • Andy Chambers
    signed 2015-04-12 10:30:23 +0100
    What a disgrace. Another example of exploitation of the little man. The corporate giants aren’t content with the demoralisation of zero hour contracts, but consistently ensuring that the man or woman on the tills or stacking shelves stays exactly where they are. The rich become richer, and some of the richest companies on earth count on money from a bankrupt government so that they don’t have to dig a little deeper. Enjoy bathing in your huge piles of money, while your employees count the coppers in their jars.
  • Froilan Legaspi
    signed 2015-04-12 10:27:52 +0100
  • Murray McLean
    signed 2015-04-12 10:27:06 +0100
  • Ben Coode-Adams
    signed 2015-04-12 09:59:06 +0100
  • Soledad Muñiz
    signed 2015-04-12 09:53:11 +0100
  • Caroline Ibbott
    signed via 2015-04-12 09:51:26 +0100
  • Ruth Hayes
    signed 2015-04-12 09:45:39 +0100
  • Paul Regan
    signed 2015-04-12 09:38:30 +0100
  • Jonathan Regan
    signed 2015-04-12 09:37:26 +0100
  • matthew bolton
    signed 2015-04-12 09:29:08 +0100
  • Ian Wilson
    signed 2015-04-12 09:28:25 +0100
  • Gill Robbins
    signed 2015-04-12 09:28:03 +0100
    Do the right thing – pay your staff ( employees and contractors) a living wage – start paying your own way instead of sponging off the state please.
  • Sahar Al-Faifi
    @SaharAlFaifi tweeted link to this page. 2015-04-12 09:26:49 +0100
    Sign the petition: 5 Successful Companies are Leeching £5 billion from the Taxpayer to Subsidise Low Pay http://www.citizensuk.org/subsidy?recruiter_id=16718
  • Sahar Al-Faifi
    signed 2015-04-12 09:24:56 +0100
  • Martin Johnstone
    @MartinJohnston8 tweeted link to this page. 2015-04-12 09:22:55 +0100
    Sign the petition: 5 Successful Companies are Leeching £5 billion from the Taxpayer to Subsidise Low Pay http://www.citizensuk.org/subsidy?recruiter_id=28762
  • Martin Johnstone
    signed 2015-04-12 09:22:22 +0100
  • Jon Ward
    signed 2015-04-12 09:22:13 +0100
  • Mary Flannery
    signed 2015-04-12 09:18:50 +0100
  • Amy Hooper
    signed 2015-04-12 09:16:34 +0100