Cleveland Police tsar pledges to pay workers living wage

A POLICE chief has thrown his weight behind a scheme to ensure all employees get a fair wage.

Cleveland’s Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger has signed up to the Living Wage campaign and has been accredited by the National Living Wage Foundation .

The Living Wage in the UK is currently £7.45 per hour, compared to the minimum wage of £6.19 per hour.

While a rookie PC will start on an annual salary between £19,000 and £22,000 a year depending on their experience, many support staff working in roles with police forces up and down the UK have earned less than the minimum wage.

But Mr Coppinger insists the PCC is committed to supporting the Living Wage campaign and has already ensured that staff employed by Cleveland Police and its strategic partners are paid the Living Wage or above.

Mr Coppinger said: “The vast majority of our contracts do pay at least the Living Wage, and to gain accreditation as a Living Wage employer means that I can ensure fairness for all staff working for Cleveland Police and its partners.

“This week is Living Wage week, which is a really good opportunity for other employers to sign up to the campaign and I would urge them to do so.

“With ever-increasing pressures on household budgets, it’s important that employers in the North East play their part to minimise the impact of poverty pay.”

Rhys Moore, Director of the Living Wage Foundation said: “We are absolutely delighted to welcome the Police & Crime Commissioner for Cleveland and Cleveland Police to the ranks of the 430 Living Wage Accredited Employers.

“The Living Wage has become a must have badge of honour for employers. By looking out for the Living Wage badge you can now choose to support businesses that are doing right thing.

“It works just like Fairtrade and will grow even faster with consumer support.”