Women have been harder hit by the cost of living crisis because they tend to earn less.
More than 2 million women are paid below the real living wage, the Living Wage Foundation said, representing 14% of all working women, compared with 1.4 million (9%) men. Overall, 60% of all jobs that pay below the real living wage are held by women.
Katherine Chapman, director of the Living Wage Foundation, said the research “demonstrates the reality that millions of women in the UK – often cleaners, catering staff and care workers – are more likely to be trapped in low-paying, insecure and precarious jobs.”
The level of the real living wage is calculated annually by the foundation, based on the costs of the basics required for a decent standard of living. The rate is currently £10.90 an hour across the UK, and £11.95 in London.
The charity found that women are more likely to be on zero-hours work contracts, representing 13% of female and 9% of male workers.
Women are also less likely to be paid for a shift when it is cancelled. More than quarter of women on such contracts said they were not paid anything for a cancelled shift, compared with 17% of men.
The survey also highlighted the impact of low pay on female workers during the cost of living crisis, where three-quarters of women felt that their pay increased their anxiety levels, compared with 65% of men, while more women than men said their pay reduced their quality of life.