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Briefing

It’s vital social investors promote Living Wage in cost of living crisis

The escalating cost of living crisis led us to consider what more we can do to help alleviate the immediate need. One action that stands out is promoting the real Living Wage among our investees and the wider social enterprise and impact investment sector.

Written by:
Denise Holle, Head of Social Investment, and Harmony Chan, Investment Portfolio Manager
Date published:

At JRF we're driven by the belief that poverty in the UK can be solved. This unifying theme in our insight, policy and campaigning work also runs through our social investment portfolio.

Research we’ve undertaken with our portfolio investees suggests several approaches investors can adopt fairly quickly to make a difference.

Recommendations for social investors:

1. Embed Living Wage (LW) considerations in your investment decision making:

  • Always look at applicants’ accreditation status, and at the number of their staff being paid the real LW.
  • For non-LW payers always ask for reasons, and a calculation of what the cost to them would be if they started paying it.
  • Become a Living Wage Funder (LWF) to join a movement of funders, social impact investors and entrepreneurs championing the real Living Wage

2. Support investees and applicants to become Living Wage accredited by:

  • Signposting to Living Wage Foundation resources and the tailored help available to all prospective applicants.
  • Providing concessionary funding or sponsoring advice and training.

3. Support enterprises with innovative delivery models that mitigate the trade-off between serving disadvantaged groups and paying staff the real Living Wage.