Archbishop John Sentamu: Workers Should Be Paid Living Wage

Over at my bro’s blog, Vox Political, there’s an interesting piece on an article by the Archbishop of York, John Sentamu, in yesterday’s Observer. His grace has stated that workers should be paid a living wage, and that the taxpayer should not fund big business, views with which I entirely concur. Sentamu is an excellent defender of Christianity in a Britain that is increasingly hostile to it, and like many in the church is keenly aware of social injustice. My brother’s article begins

How pleasing it is to see the Archbishop of York agrees with the view, long-held by Vox Political, that British workers should be paid a living wage, and that the taxpayer should not be subsidising big business!

Archbishop John Sentamu is to chair a year-long commission investigating the need for a living wage. In The Observer, he wrote: “The holes in millions of paycheques are being plugged by in-work support to the tune of £4 billion a year. But why aren’t those who are profiting from their workers paying up? Why is government having to subsidise businesses who don’t pay their employees enough to live on? It is a question we need to answer and act on – fast. The cost of living is rising but wages are not. In the rush for profit, and for high pay at the top, too many companies have forgotten the basic moral imperative that employees be paid enough to live on.”

This is a sentiment that Vox Political wholly supports.

Needless to say, there are also detractors. A commenter known as ‘neilcon’ pointed out: “The high cost of running a small business in this country is one of the main reasons why the hourly rates are so low. If you employ someone at £8 you then have to pay a further 13 per cent to the government in employer’s National Insurance contributions for the privilege of employing someone; you have to supply that person with suitable equipment for their work.” The commenter reeled off a few other business-related expenses before going on to “the issue of the banks utterly refusing to lend to small businesses, the high cost of renting office premises, business rates on your office premises to the government, the high cost of VAT, together with clients trying to squeeze the final price as much as possible and the very late payments by bigger companies.

The Vox Political post is here:http://mikesivier.wordpress.com/2013/07/21/are-wages-too-low-or-is-the-cost-of-living-too-high-or-both/

And The Observer article is here:http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/jul/20/low-pay-scandal-john-sentamu

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