Fair reward for the fourth ‘emergency service’

Salford City Council has announced that it will commit to paying all social care workers in the city the Real Living Wage from 1 April 2022. This will be delivered in partnership with Salford’s Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) through the city’s joint funding arrangements.

City Mayor Paul Dennett said: “We have been working hard with colleagues in the Clinical Commissioning Group as we prepare for next year’s budget and I am delighted to announce that all our care workers, our heroes of lockdown, will receive the Real Living Wage. It is absolutely without doubt the right thing to do, our care workers who have actively been our fourth emergency service throughout the pandemic deserve every penny!”

The pay increase will benefit over 4,000 care workers in the city who are not yet at this level and it will uplift salaries to £9.90 per hour. The workforce is 86% women and over half work part-time with the majority in family age groups. It is also expected that the pay reward will help retain our care worker heroes in this critical sector.

The increase is subject to agreement of budgets by Salford City Council and Salford CCG.

Mayor Dennett said: “We have strived to extend the Real Living Wage to social care employees for some time and is more important than ever after two years when they have protected and cared for our most vulnerable, it is only morally right and fair that we recognise their hard work and dedication.

“We have appealed for Government to address the health and social care crisis but can’t continue to sit back and watch the exodus of people from the sector

“The decision is one of the ways that we are tackling poverty in the city, as these are amongst the lowest paid workers. The National Living Wage will be £9.50 from April 2022. The Real Living Wage will lift that to £9.90 per hour which is an extra £768 per year, making a definite difference to people’s lives.

“In a time when the costs of living are escalating, the Care Quality Commission has found vacancies in social care have doubled since April 2021, we need to value and keep committed, caring people in these critical roles within our city, looking after our loved ones

“We pride ourselves on working to be a Living Wage City and it is important more than ever that no one is left behind. We ask businesses and agencies in the city to join us in paying the Real Living Wage, to put money back into the purses and pockets of local people.”

Dr Tom Tasker, GP and chair of NHS Salford Clinical Commissioning Group says: “Care workers play a critical role in looking after some of the most vulnerable people in Salford, ensuring they receive the best possible care.

“We recognise that all care workers have a challenging and demanding job which has been especially difficult throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

“I am delighted that our commitment to the Real Living Wage means that all care workers’ salaries will be uplifted, and I want to personally thank all care staff for their valuable contribution to the health and care system in Salford.

“Costs of living are rising, and we value the commitment that each of our care workers put into their challenging role. It is very important that we keep these people in these roles looking after our family, friends and loved ones.”

Steve North, Branch Secretary of Salford City UNISON, the trade union representing Salford care workers says:

“If a society is judged by how it treats its most vulnerable, then it should also be judged by how it treats those who care for the most vulnerable. Care and support workers have always been underappreciated heroes and the pandemic has highlighted this for everyone to see. UNISON has long campaigned for these crucial key workers to receive at least the Real Living Wage and we commend the City Mayor, the council and the CCG for working with us to deliver this increase.”

This will affect over 4,000 workers in the city, a largely female workforce.

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Date published
Tuesday 8 February 2022

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