Oxford “closest” to gaining Living Wage status

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A paper recommending that Oxford becomes an official Living Wage employer was handed to a University committee this week.

During the committee meeting, students took to Wellington Square outside the University offices to demonstrate their solidarity for the campaign.

 Supporters of the Living Wage carried banners, balloons and gave out cookies.

 This most recent demonstration comes after a number of similar protests took place last term.

 This is the last meeting of the Planning Resources and Allocations Committee before a recommendation concerning the motion is passed to the University Council for further consideration. 

 A statement on the Living Wage facebook page stated: “This is the closest the University has ever come to accreditation, meaning that it would commit to paying all staff in departments and central buildings at least a Living Wage in keeping with the rising cost of living”. 

 The campaign to achieve a living wage for Oxford University staff was founded in 2006 by a group of Balliol students.

Andrew Grey, Chair of the Oxford Living Wage Campaign, comments that “We wanted to show the Committee that students at Oxford care about our staff being paid a fair wage. Students heard this morning about why the Oxford Living Wage Campaign exists and some of the stories we have heard from members of staff about the struggles they faced on low wages.

 It was greatly encouraging to see so many students turn up on a cold, wet morning, and I hope that the message was received clearly by the Committee that paying the Living Wage matters. We hope to hear soon whether the committee were in favour of the Living Wage for all staff in central buildings and departments.”