01 May 2011

FTSE 100 companies must adopt Living Wage, say Methodists

A campaign to lobby FTSE 100 companies to adopt the Living Wage has been backed by the Methodist Church and its Central Finance Board.

The Living Wage is the minimum hourly wage necessary for an individual to meet their basic needs, including shelter, clothing and nutrition. Revd Alison Tomlin, President of the Methodist Conference, will publicly endorse the launch of the FairPensions campaign at Methodist Central Hall on May 2, with more than 2,000 people expected to attend.

Revd Tomlin said: "The Living Wage is about treating people with dignity and respect; it is about recognising our value as individuals, as human beings. It is absurd to pay people a wage that will never allow them to meet their needs. The majority of those living in poverty are in working households and this kind of practice keeps people in poverty. FTSE 100 companies should lead the way in bringing about fair wages for all who work."

The FairPensions campaign will be launched at a mass rally organised by London Citizens at 2pm at Methodist Central Hall on May 2. Churches, charities and institutional investors will join in urging FTSE 100 companies, to become Living Wage employers. One of the signatories is The Central Finance Board of the Methodist Church, which manages funds on behalf of Methodism in Britain. People will be encouraged to lobby FTSE 100 companies directly online at www.activateyourmoney.org.

Bill Seddon, Chief Executive of the Central Finance Board said: "With the Methodist Church supporting the Living Wage campaign, it is entirely appropriate that the Central Finance Board signs these letters to FTSE 100 companies. We look at the relationships companies have with their employees, suppliers, and service providers. That leads us to consider not only executive pay levels, but also the lowest paid in a company. The Central Finance Board is helping to put Methodist Church policy into practice by encouraging companies from its position as a socially responsible investor."  

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