There are more Londoners in jobs paying less than the hourly London Living Wage than ever previously recorded, according to figures newly compiled by the publishers of London’s most comprehensive survey of poverty.
Trust for London, which works with the New Policy Institute think tank to produce London’s authoritative Poverty Profile, has estimated that the number of working Londoners receiving less than the current London Living Wage of £10.20 an hour is 760,000, an increase of 60,000 compared with the equivalent figure for 2017.
The proportion of Londoners in the capital’s workforce has also risen to just over one in five employees (22.5 per cent), following two years in which that figure has fallen. There had previously been sharp increases, with rises from 14 per cent to 22 per cent between 2010 and 2015.
Trust for London attributes the renewed hikes in low pay numbers and percentages to “a higher share of full-time jobs paying below the voluntary rate, which is based what Londoners need to meet a basic standard of living in the high-cost capital and is significantly higher the the statutory national minimum wage.
Around 30,000 full time jobs, 14 per cent of them, currently pay less than the London Living Wage rate, the Trust says. The proportion of low-paid part-time jobs has not changed, though it continues to account for a far higher number. About 47 per cent of all part-time jobs in London are low-paid, according the Trust.
Low paid job percentages in the rest of the UK also rose between 2017 and 2018, but by the smaller amount of 0.5 percent to the lower level of 20.3 per cent. Trust for London notes that the figures it has calculated “differ slightly” from the more detailed data available to the Office for National Statistics, but that calculating its own figures on the same basis as previous years enables it to make more year-by-year and other comparisons.