Teesside University becomes a living wage employer

Teesside University has become the latest university to announce set to raise the pay of its lowest-paid staff.

The university is renowned in the region as an organisation that values its workforce and it is one of only five UK universities to be accredited with the Investors in People gold award – the highest Investors in People accolade.

The living wage has been calculated at £7.65 an hour, and Teesside University has agreed to introduce a supplement to raise the level of its lowest grade pay point to make sure its staff receive the living wage.

Teesside University employs more than 2,300 staff, 162 of whom are on the first salary scale. This means that all of these staff will now receive £7.65.

The living wage is seen as the level of income needed to provide an acceptable standard of living in Britain to ensure good health, adequate child development and social inclusion.

UNISON joint branch secretary, and chair of the union’s higher education service group executive, Denise Ward has spearheaded a long campaign on campus alongside her trade union colleagues in UCU to make Teesside University a living wage employer, working with the other joint secretaries and the support of the officers and executive of the branch – .

Ms Ward said: ”Every member of staff plays a vital role and it is through their hard work that Teesside won University of the Year in 2009/10 – the first modern university ever to do so – and this year was awarded the prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prize for world-class excellence in education.”

The university have agreed to pay the living wage for its lowest-paid employees from 1 April 2014.

UNISON regional organiser Duncan Rothwell said: “UNISON’s Teesside University branch has set a high bar for all higher education employers in the Northern region.”

UNISON continues to lead the campaign for no employee in higher education to be paid less than a living wage and is convinced that, given the current success of the UK university sector, the money is available in to make an improved offer on pay for those that have contributed to the world-class services to students.

The campaign for a living wage is widening in the region, with Middlesborough announcing that it aims to become a ‘living wage town’.

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