From the Evening Standard 22 July 2010:
Boris Johnson called for his London living wage to be applied across Whitehall today to help the Standard’s Dispossessed campaign.
The Mayor’s economic adviser Anthony Browne said the policy to pay a minimum £7.85 an hour would play a huge part in lifting the capital’s “working poor” off the breadline.
The case of Sandra Sanchez, the Treasury contract cleaner whose wage of £6.95 an hour leaves her family able to afford only lentils for dinner, was “shocking but hardly unusual”, said Mr Browne.
In Newham, one of London’s poorest boroughs, 28 per cent of people in work earn less than £7 an hour. “Such in-work poverty is a major problem in London, because of the social impact it has and because it means that for many unskilled people, it simply doesn’t pay to work,” he added.
“It helps to explain the paradox of why London, the job creation capital of Britain, has such high unemployment.”
The Mayor has implemented the London living wage across the GLA group, ensuring all who work for him earn a decent wage. Many firms are adopting the policy, but much of the public sector remains resistant.
David Cameron has in the past made clear he is a supporter of the living wage concept and promised to do the work needed in Government.
But Mr Browne warned that the Prime Minister should “expect the bureaucrats to find all sorts of financial and legal obstacles to implementing it across Whitehall, let alone the wider public sector”