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Bucks key workers paid less than living wage

Three key worker roles in Buckinghamshire have been found to earn less than the 'Real UK living wage'.

Published by Scarlett Bawden-Gaul at 5:42am 5th May 2020. (Updated at 5:24pm 5th May 2020) 3-minute read.

Bucks key workers paid less than living wage

A salary platform has released data about how key workers are paid in Buckinghamshire.

Check-a-Salary conducted research into the salaries of 20 different key work roles across the UK, including here in Buckinghamshire.

In the county three key worker roles were found to earn less than the Real UK Living Wage, which is £19,344 before tax, they are: 

  • Waste Collector (£17865.72)
  • Nursery Nurse (£19246.24)
  • Stock Clerk (£19267.53)

The UK Real Living Wage is a rate based on what people actually need to earn to live. It is higher than the UK Living wage because it is independently-calculated based on what people need to get by.

As of April 2020, the Real Living Wage is £9.30 per hour compared to £8.72 for the UK Living Wage.

Nursery nurses are some of those earning below the Living Wage

Jonathan Rawlins from the group says:

"I think at the moment we are particularly relying on key workers and some of them are paid considerable below the UK average of around £30,000. And how if we didn't have these key workers the country would be grinding to a halt. So, care workers earn around £20,000 with is very low really."

The national living wage was introduced as a way of measuring the minimum income a person could have to meet their basic needs. 

It is different to the national average, which stands closer to £30,000 a year. 

Could something change?

Bin collections Bucks

Of the 20 key worker salaries analysed in Buckinghamshire, 12 fell below the national average.

Jonathan explained this crisis could change that though:

"I think at this precise moment we need to get through the crisis but when things get back to normal I think a conversation needs to be happening about how we reward those we rely on. Without them our lifestyles wouldn't exist.

"As a country we value education a lot with setting the salary, which yes has its place but we also need to consider the social value someone is providing. On top of the educational service they're providing, which don't necessarily go hand in hand."

The data which is used in the calculations comes from advertised jobs from 500+ different sites over the last two years.

It is also based on an assumed 40 hour week.

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