Oxford's Green Councillors have called on the City Council to increase the Oxford Living Wage, currently indexed at 95% of the London Living Wage. The London Living Wage is set each year by Living wage Foundation. It is currently £9.15ph in London with Oxford set at £8.69ph (95% of the London figure).
The matter was raised by Cllr Craig Simmons, who Chairs the Council's Scrutiny Committee, in March. The Greens are applying pressure as the matter is now under consideration by the City's Inequalities Panel.
Increasing the Oxford Living Wage will help to significantly address the huge inequalities in the City. Child poverty, the use of foodbanks and life expectancy all vary significantly between the most and least deprived parts of the City. The increase is also justified by the huge increases in house prices and rents which recently led to Oxford being dubbed as the least affordable City in the country.
Says Cllr Craig Simmons; "Each year the Council reviews the level at which the Oxford Living Wage is set. This year there are extremely good arguments for increasing it to help address the huge inequalities which exist within the City."
The call for an increase has been supported by the Green Party's Oxford East Parliamentary Candidate Ann Duncan, a former World Bank economist, and veteran social welfare campaigner and Oxford West and Abingdon Candidate Larry Sanders.