Work & Wages

In-work poverty is a problem in Greater Manchester. The Poverty Commission reported that an estimated 12.3% of Greater Manchester employees are paid less than the Living Wage.

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Employment Charter for GM Poverty Action

Making employment work for everyone

By Andy Burnham , Mayor of Greater Manchester For many people, modern work isn’t working. In an increasingly insecure UK labour market, poverty rates have risen for every type of working family and one in eight workers nationally is now in poverty. Our Greater Manchester Independent Prosperity Review, launched earlier this year, found that wages

IKEA living wage article for GM Poverty Action

IKEA – Introducing the Living Wage

IKEA – Introducing the Living Wage is an investment we are incredibly proud of By Katarina Verdon Olsson, Store Manager at IKEA Manchester (Ashton-Under-Lyne) Since IKEA became the largest accredited Real Living Wage employer in retail  in 2016, the Greater Manchester Living Wage Campaign has worked with the local store in Ashton-Under-Lyne to promote their

What difference does my vote make?

Making the difference! By Chris Smallwood, Director, Anchor Removals It is one of the most frustrating statements politicians hear from their electorate – “What difference does my vote make?” I don’t agree with the sentiment or the statement, but I do share the sense of disenfranchisement. Let’s face it, when you have a family –

Working Wardrobe for GM Poverty Action

Working Wardrobe

Working Wardrobe, funded by Bolton at Home, is being set up to tackle another barrier into employment that so many men and women face today. That barrier is the lack of suitable clothing to wear in order to make a good first impression at an interview. Working Wardrobe want to give those people the best

HMRC Minimum wages article for GM Poverty Action

Minimum Wages

National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage HMRC wishes to raise awareness of the new rates of pay that will come into force when the National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage increase on 1 April 2018 to ensure that all employers are at least paying their staff the legal minimum. A website to assist employers is

GM Good Employment Charter – Have your say

Article by Graham Whitham GMPA is delighted to see Andy Burnham taking forward the idea of an employment charter for Greater Manchester. This is something we’ve been working on for some time through our joint paper with the Inclusive Growth Unit, our Work and Wages Special Interest Group (SIG) and through the GMPA hosted Greater

Sue Haworth on work and wages for GM Poverty Action

Is having a job the way out of poverty?

Is having a job the single most important way out of poverty? Last year GMPA Director Tom Skinner launched a series of articles on in-work poverty, asking “Is work the best route out of poverty?” Here Bolton Councillor Sue Haworth unpicks that question by exploring the changes in evidence over the last ten years. The

Salford Tackling Poverty for GM Poverty Action

Tackling Poverty

Tackling poverty – a view from Salford’s City Mayor Recently Salford City Council and NHS Salford Clinical Commissioning Group announced a 10.7% pay rise for Salford’s care workers, boosting their pay to £8.30 per hour. The move will cost Salford about £725,000 annually and I believe that the city’s vital care workers are worth every

Under 25s CAB article for GM Poverty Action

Under twenty Fives

A real living wage for all: combatting discrimination of young people under 25 by Victoria Egerton, Citizens Advice Manchester The government National Living Wage Policy applies to those aged 25 and over, but under 25’s do not receive a young person discount on groceries, or specific tariffs on their energy bills. Under 25’s also tend

Our economy article for GM Poverty Action

Our economy isn’t working

Can Greater Manchester pioneer a new way of doing things? By Graham Whitham The UK is failing to ensure economic and jobs growth leads to higher living standards for all. GDP growth has been positive in every quarter since the end of 2012. The employment rate is at a record high and the unemployment rate

Job searching article for GM Poverty Action

Lessons from France

Supporting out-of-work partnered parents with job search and training: lessons from France By Abigail Taylor Throughout 2017 we’ve been running a series of Work and Wages articles exploring in-work poverty and the challenge of supporting people in to decent work. In this latest article, Abigail Taylor compares employment support in the UK with that of

Living Wage Employer article for GM Poverty Action

GM Living Wage Employer

Greater Manchester Living Wage Campaign Greater Manchester Poverty Action is now hosting the Greater Manchester Living Wage Campaign, having taken it on from Church Action on Poverty. We want to thank Church Action for having convened and hosted the campaign for the last four years. It has been a real success story for Greater Manchester

IFS report on Living Standards for GM Poverty Action

IFS Report

Poverty, living standards and inequality A recent report from the Institute for Fiscal Studies looked at changes in household incomes in the UK. The report contained a number of worrying findings, including strong geographical concentrations of poverty and strong regional variations in incomes. Findings include: • Poverty is especially geographically concentrated for working-age households and

Employment Progression for GM Poverty Action

Employment Progression

What does it really mean? And to whom? As part of the ongoing Work and Wages series, Ingun Borg from the University of Sheffield writes about the concept of employment progression, how it is defined by lower-income people, and whether Universal Credit might is helping people to progress. In recent months, the concepts of inclusive

Hidden article for GM Poverty Action


Hidden:  this is an excerpt from the executive summary.  The full report is available here A new report by GM Talent Match presents the findings from research undertaken to explore and understand ‘hidden’ young people  (18-24, not in education, employment or training) across Greater Manchester. The aim of the research was to identify the profile

Employment rights article for GM Poverty Action

Employment Rights

Poverty, employment rights and Brexit…  and general election pledges! As part of the ongoing Work and Wages series, Allison Foreman from Macc’s Policy and Influence Team discusses employment rights and the current political environment. In-work poverty stems from a multitude of factors,  including low pay, low in-work benefits  for families without children, poor progression opportunities

Employment Charter for GM Poverty Action

Employment charter

Taking action on local employment issues: how far can voluntary employment charter initiatives take us? As the Greater Manchester mayoral election approaches, a key issue on the candidates’ agendas is raising employment standards across the city. Greater Manchester Poverty Action has been working with Ceri Hughes from the Inclusive Growth Analysis Unit and Emily Ball

Skills article for GM Poverty Action

Skills distribution, social inequality and economic performance This Work and Wages article is the third in the series from Mike Booth, Regional Organiser for Unison North West. He argues that skills are being pushed down the pay grades and advocates that the concept of inclusive growth should be used as a guide for skills policies.

Better jobs IGAU article for GM Poverty Action

 Better Jobs for Greater Manchester – What Can the Mayor Do? As part of the ongoing Work and Wages series, Ceri Hughes from the Inclusive Growth Analysis Unit writes about some of the employment challenges facing Greater Manchester, and what the new mayor might do to address them. Shortly after the election on May 4th

WASPI article for GM Poverty Action

Women waiting for a promised pension

Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI) campaigns for the thousands of older women forced to wait longer than they expected for their state pensions. While they agree with the equalisation of the pension age between men and women they don’t agree with the unfair way the changes were implemented – with little or no personal

Mind the Gap for GM Poverty Action

Mind the Gap

As part of the ongoing Work and Wages series Emily Ball, Policy and Advocacy Officer from Oxfam, and Mike Booth, Regional Organiser for Unison North West, write about structural causes of the gender pay gap, and what employers can do to close the gap. The Gender pay gap is the measure of the difference in

Pension Time Bomb for GM Poverty Action

The Pension Time-Bomb

Our Work and Wages series looks at how work can become a route out of poverty. In this article John Leigh from the Greater Manchester Living Wage Campaign points out flaws with the National Insurance system, in particular how it incentivises a culture of low-paid and temporary part-time work. The Pension Time Bomb – Its

Lets get creative for GM Poverty Action

Let’s get creative

Our Work and Wages series looks at how work can become a route out of poverty. In this article Deborah Leigh from the  Greater Manchester Living Wage Campaign talks about the importance of creativity, training and investment in people, as  opposed to de-skilling roles, in the context of automation. The cleverest man in Britain says

Work and Wages article: care workers for GM Poverty Action

Work and Wages: Care Workers

In our January 18th newsletter, Tom Skinner described some of the obstacles to tackling poverty through employment. He then asked a group of experts to respond with their own articles about how we can overcome those obstacles, for a Greater Manchester where work really is the best way out of poverty. Mike Booth, Regional Organiser

Work and Wages article for GM Poverty Action

Is work the best route out of poverty?

Work and Wages Series The Joseph Rowntree Foundation reported last month that the number of people in poverty from working households has risen again. Yet again most of the people in poverty in the UK are from working households. One in every eight UK workers is living in poverty, but the Greater Manchester figure is

Gender and the geography of low pay

Gender and the geography of low pay By Graham Whitham With around two thirds of children and working age adults in poverty in the UK living in working households it is vital that the quality of work available to everyone improves. The UK has a high proportion of jobs that are low-paid and recent trends

Greater Manchester Living Wage celebration of 100 employers photo for GMPA article

100 Living Wage employers

Greater Manchester celebrates having over 100 Living Wage employers Greater Manchester is now home to over 100 accredited Living Wage Employers, who pay the full Living Wage rate of £8.25/hr or above to all of their staff. GM is the first city region in the country outside London to reach this milestone, and it means a

Back to work group for GMPA article

Business, Jobs & Growth

This article was first published in 2014 although some data has been updated. Employment is widely regarded as the best route out of poverty and social inequality; however, getting a job doesn’t automatically solve poverty issues. Jobs can simply shift those affected from out-of-work poverty to in-work poverty. Many training routes into better jobs, such

Paying peanuts image for GMPA article

The ‘right type’ of labour market

Employment is crucial to tackling poverty, or so we’re often told despite the sharp rise in in-work poverty over recent years. Last month many people welcomed the positive news that nationally the unemployment rate is continuing to fall. Locally we have seen a sharp fall in the number of people in Greater Manchester claiming Job

The Big Issue Why don't we just column added to GM Poverty Action website

Gizza Job!

What would a modern day Yosser Hughes cry out for? In the early 1980s Alan Bleasdale’s “Boys from the Blackstuff” brought the phrase ‘gizza job’ into the homes of people across the UK. Delivered in the Liverpudlian tones of Yosser Hughes, one of the show’s main protagonists, this phrase uttered in desperation by a man

The rise of in-work poverty

One of the most marked poverty trends in the UK in recent years has been the growth of in-work poverty. This is particularly true in respect of child poverty. In the mid-1990s around 45% of children living in poverty were in households where at least one adult was in work. By 2012 that figure had

Has Osborne delivered a blow to the Living Wage campaign?

“A cack-handed approach to boosting the minimum wage risks pushing families into poverty and undermining the Living Wage campaign” says Graham Whitham. George Osborne announced a very welcome increase in the minimum wage in his budget last week, raising it to £7.20 for over 25s from April. Arguing that ‘Britain deserves a pay rise’ he

Living Wage & The Role of Local Government

The full report is available here: Living wage and the role of local government This think-piece written collectively by the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) and the Greater Manchester Living Wage Campaign (GMLWC) seeks to discuss how local authorities in Greater Manchester can show the required leadership to improve pay across the city-region. In Greater

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