More than 5 million workers across Britain are in low-paid and insecure work, leaving families struggling to make ends meet, according to research published by the Living Wage Foundation.
More than 2 million parents and 1 million young adults lack adequate working hours and pay to make ends meet, with millions of workers facing cancelled shifts, while a disproportionate amount of people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds are also affected.
Workers in Wales, the north-east and West Midlands experience the highest rates of low-paid insecure work in the country. According to the Living Wage Foundation, more than a fifth of the workforce in Wales are in low-paid and insecure jobs, about 300,000 people. Scotland had the lowest rate of job insecurity and low wages in the country at 13%, followed by the south-east and London.
the campaign group behind the real living wage – a voluntary pay level designed to reflect living costs, set at £9 across the country and £10.55 in London – is expanding its campaign from focusing on pay levels to also encourage firms to provide guaranteed shift patterns and minimum working hours.
Katherine Chapman, director of the foundation, said: “A lack of secure, stable hours is leaving millions of families struggling to keep their heads above water.”