The Living Wage Foundation has published a research report into the scale of low pay in the sector, who is most impacted by it, the effect that paying the Living Wage has on Third Sector organisations, and the main drivers of low pay.
The report identifies solutions available to third sector organisations when it comes to paying the Real Living Wage to their staff, partners, and those they fund.
Low pay is a significant issue in the third sector: 14.1% of jobs in the third sector are paid less than the Living Wage. This is higher than for the public sector (5.5 % but lower than the private sector (22.1%).
Low pay in the third sector is reinforcing inequality: Jobs held by women are more likely to pay less than the Living Wage than men (16.6% compared to 10.3%). Disabled workers are more likely to be low-paid, but the difference is narrower in the third sector than across the economy as a whole. In the third sector, certain racial groups face an above-average risk of being low-paid, particularly workers from Pakistani and Bangladeshi backgrounds, Black African, Black Caribbean and Black British workers, and workers from ‘Other’ ethnic groups (as defined by the research)..
Third sector organisations benefit from paying a Real Living Wage: 68% of Real Living Wage-accredited third sector organisations said paying the Real Living Wage enhanced their general reputation as an employer. 42% said paying the Real Living Wage improved the recruitment of employees into jobs covered by that wage. 24% said accreditation helped secure funding or investment for their organisation.
Public support for paying a real Living Wage: Polling found that 78%of the public say that staff working in the third sector (directly and third-party) should receive the Real Living Wage.