FTSE 100 companies must adopt Living Wage, say Methodists

A campaign to lobby FTSE 100 companies to adopt the Living Wagehas been backed by the Methodist Church and its Central FinanceBoard.

The Living Wage is the minimum hourly wage necessary for anindividual to meet their basic needs, including shelter, clothingand nutrition. Revd Alison Tomlin, President of the MethodistConference, will publicly endorse the launch of the FairPensionscampaign at Methodist Central Hall on May 2, with more than 2,000people expected to attend.

Revd Tomlin said: "The Living Wage is about treating people withdignity and respect; it is about recognising our value asindividuals, as human beings. It is absurd to pay people a wagethat will never allow them to meet their needs. The majority ofthose living in poverty are in working households and this kind ofpractice keeps people in poverty. FTSE 100 companies should leadthe way in bringing about fair wages for all who work."

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

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