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Category: Living wage

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Minimum wage: football clubs and Wagamama among worst underpayers

Name and shame list reveals 9,200 underpaid employees within total of 179 firmsWagamama, TGI Fridays, Marriott Hotels and Karen Millen are among the companies named and shamed by the government for failing to pay the legal minimum wage.The latest list,…

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Liverpool lead way in paying all staff, including casuals, real living wage

• Liverpool employ 1,000 part-time staff on match days• ‘This demonstrates how highly we value all those who work for the club’Liverpool are to become the first Premier League club to commit to paying all employees, including casuals on match days, the…

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Said & Done: ‘When we talk about football, a woman’s input is useless’

Also featuring: John Delaney, the living wage, and Gigi Becali’s gold spoon

Uefa head Aleksander Ceferin – happy the six new faces on his executive committee will help “rebuild our image, restore our credibility … No empty promises; no empty words; no scandals. Let’s act. With humility, respect and professionalism.”

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Everton to pay staff living wage

Premier League club becomes latest of only five clubs, including Chelsea, to win accreditation by Living Wage Foundation

Everton has become the second Premier League club to pledge to pay all its staff at least the independently calculated living wage.

The Liverpool-based football club is being accredited by the Living Wage Foundation as the body prepares to announce this year’s minimum pay rate – which is based on a calculation of the amount employees and their families need to live.

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Premier League living wage pledge must go further says campaign leader

• Rhys Moore welcomes move but says it should cover all contracted staff
• Chelsea living wage commitment ‘goes so much further than this’
Premier League promises to share £1bn of TV deal with English football Continue reading…




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Premier League living wage pledge must go further says campaign leader

• Rhys Moore welcomes move but says it should cover all contracted staff
• Chelsea living wage commitment ‘goes so much further than this’
Premier League promises to share £1bn of TV deal with English football Continue reading…




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Premier League promises £1 billion of Sky deal to clubs outside top flight

• Richard Scudamore: ‘This is unprecedented in world sport’
• £5.14 billion deal could rise to £8.5bn with overseas money
Premier League clubs collectively in profit for first time in 15 years Continue reading…




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Living wage campaigners disappointed after meeting with Premier League

• Citizens UK attempting to persuade clubs to pay living wage
• Premier League maintains wages is a matter for the clubs
• Chelsea are the first Premier League club to pay all staff living wage

Campaigners calling on all top-flight clubs to pay the living wage in the wake of its bumper £5.3bn domestic TV deals have expressed disappointment with the reaction of the Premier League following a meeting this week.

A delegation of Citizens UK members who have been working on a campaign to persuade football clubs to commit to paying the living wage met Premier League executives on Thursday and delivered a Change.org e-petition that had reached 65,000 signatures.

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Our favourite things online this week: from Wimbledon views to slam dunks

Featuring Enfield Town’s advertising, the essence of winners, Zach LaVine’s leaps, identical pole vaulters and the Premier League’s reluctance to pay the living wage

Forrest Allen, one of the foremost basketball coaches in the early 20th century, was no fan of the slam dunk. He set out his case for raising the hoop an extra two feet off the ground in an article entitled “Dunking Isn’t Basketball” for Country Gentleman magazine in 1935. “Those tall fellows were leaping at the 10-foot baskets and were literally ‘dunking’ the ball into the hoop, just as a doughnut is inelegantly dipped into the morning coffee,” he wrote, with an air of haughty despair. “And I say that is not basketball. My conception of the game is that goals should be shot and not dunked.”

The Premier League just secured a record breaking £5.14bn by selling the TV rights to their matches. However, these staggeringly wealthy football clubs still pay some of their employees less than the minimum amount needed to cover the cost of living in the UK, which is currently £9.15 per hour in London and £7.85 outside. It would take these staff 13 years to earn as much as some top players earn in a week. Do these clubs seriously expect us to believe that they can’t afford to pay their staff – who provide essential services such as cleaning, catering and stewarding – the basic amount needed to ensure a decent quality of life for them and their families? The chief executive of the Premier League, Richard Scudamore, recently indicated that he had no intention of taking action to make sure that clubs distribute their wealth equally amongst all those that make football matches possible. I am calling on Scudamore to change his mind about clubs’ obligations to their employees. I am asking him to take the lead on this issue by making the Premier League an accredited Living Wage employer and set an example to the 20 other clubs.

Elite athletes, at their telescoped apex, all have something in common with the way in which he whittled away everything in his being that might have distracted from the narrow scope of winning. There are no leisure activities for someone with these priorities; there is no leisure, period. If this does not seem like a club to which you’d like to belong, congratulations: you are not Arnold Palmer, or Michael Jordan, or Kobe Bryant, or Serena Williams, or Lance Armstrong. It’s not unusual for humans to hate losing, and there are plenty of athletes (and non-athletes) that value winning above anything else on earth. But while many and maybe most professional athletes fit those categories, there are others whose entire essences are signified by the idea of winning things, more things than everyone else.

“Just be original. I get guys sending folios and they look like they’ve just seen the back of a Sunday newspaper and thought ‘that’s what’s required’. If that’s what they get from their contracted agency, you’ve got to break out, you’ve got to get something that makes people think twice. If you’re mad on football and you think you’ve got a knowledge of the game, then you’ll get good pictures. But do it your way.”

This. pic.twitter.com/0XChWVofRz

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Richard Scudamore: It is not clubs’ responsibility to pay staff living wage

• Premier League chief executive defends new £5.14bn deal
• Dismisses criticism of how windfall will be distributed
• Scudamore: ‘It is up to politicians to raise minimum wage’
• Sky and BT retain Premier League rights for £5.14bn
• Ian Jack: Why can’t football pay the living wage?

Richard Scudamore has dismissed criticism of how the Premier League redistributes its income from broadcasters – insisting it is not clubs’ responsibility to pay stadium staff the living wage.

The Premier League’s chief executive, speaking after the announcement of a record £5.14bn windfall from BT and Sky, said clubs would make individual decisions on how to use the money, and he could make no guarantees over the scale of redistribution or on reducing ticket prices.

Related: Premier League TV rights grow to £5.1bn but case for redistribution strengthens | Owen Gibson

Today Premier League clubs signed a new TV deal worth £5.1 billion. 19/20 of them still refuse to pay Living Wage. http://t.co/sz3f52b526

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Sir Alex Ferguson gets £108,000 a day — and he’s retired. So why can’t football pay the living wage?

After three years of lobbying by the Living Wage Foundation, only Chelsea is set to pay staff fairly. Never mind that Alex Ferguson has earned more than £2m for 20 days’ work a year as a “global ambassador” since retiring in 2013

Nowhere is the greed, selfishness and staggering inequity of modern business more vividly illustrated than in English football’s Premier League. To them that hath, more shall be given. And to them that hath nowt? Who cares? In a blog last week, the Guardian football writer Daniel Taylor disclosed that Sir Alex Ferguson, who retired as Manchester United’s manager at the end of the 2013 season, had been paid £2.165m in the eight months to June last year for his new role as the club’s “global ambassador”. The financial documents published by United didn’t make it clear if this sum included four months back pay to May 2013, when Ferguson signed his new agreement, or whether it represented two thirds of an annual salary that would be worth roughly £3m in total. But as his contract reportedly stipulates that he need work no more than 20 days a year, even the lower estimate rewards him at the rate of £108,250 a day.

In an entertainment business that boasts salaries of £280,000 a week (paid to United’s Angel di María), Ferguson still stands out as an absurdly well-paid retiree whose last significant act for his club was to arrange the appointment of a dud successor. Sir Bobby Charlton, another of the club’s ambassadors, earns less in a year – £105,000 – than Ferguson’s daily rate; Taylor calculates that Ferguson earns at least 14 times as much as the prime minister.

Related: Prince Charles’ household dubbed Wolf Hall because of infighting, says book

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Ed Miliband criticises football clubs for not paying living wage

The Labour leader condemns football clubs which pay stars six-figure sums but don’t pay staff the living wage

The Labour leader, Ed Miliband, has criticised football clubs for not paying their employees the living wage.

In a post on his Facebook page, which argued for a “reality check” on inequality in Britain, Miliband wrote:

This weekend, many people will be going to football matches where the stars are paid six-figure sums every week, but those who work at the stadium are often paid significantly less than the living wage.

There are some clubs, like Chelsea in London and Hearts in Edinburgh, that have become accredited living wage employers. However many other football clubs including some of the giants of the Premier League have not.

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Manchester City and Arsenal fans urge their clubs to pay living wage

• Fans groups write to clubs before Manchester City v Arsenal
• Many matchday staff at both clubs on low pay
Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Debuchy ruled out for three months

Manchester City and Arsenal supporters have jointly written to the two clubs before Sunday’s Premier League match at the Etihad Stadium calling on them to pay all staff a living wage. The letter, signed by the Arsenal Independent Supporters Association, Man City Fans Living Wage Campaign, Canal Street Blues, the GMB and Unison unions and Islington politicians, focuses on the hundreds of the clubs’ matchday staff still on low pay.

Arsenal and City say the people they directly employ are paid at least the £7.85 an hour (£9.15 per hour in London) which is assessed by Loughborough University’s Centre for Research in Social Policy, for the campaign body Citizens UK, to be the minimum a person can decently live on and provide for a family. However, those working as stewards and in clubs’ large catering operations on matchdays are employed by contracted companies or agencies and many are understood to be on the legal minimum wage, which is £6.50 per hour for adults, £5.13 per hour for 18-20 year olds.

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Chelsea to be first Premier League club to pay all staff living wage

• Hearts also signed up to the initiative in Scotland this week
• Manchester City supporters call on chairman to pay living wage
• Luton Town adopt living wage as minimum level of pay
• Football’s grotesque injustice – huge fortunes, low-paid labour

Chelsea, owned by Roman Abramovich, have become the first fully professional football club in England to be accredited employers paying a living wage to all their staff. Supporter-owned FC United of Manchester became the first football club in Britain to be an accredited living wage employer in October and Hearts, in Scotland, signed up to the initiative this week.

Luton Town, of League Two, also committed this week to gaining the accreditation, which requires employers to pay a living wage to all staff, including those working for companies contracted to supply services. That is a high proportion of football clubs’ workers because most matchday staff, including stewards and people working in stadium catering operations, are employed by service companies.

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Luton Town adopt living wage as minimum level of pay

• Luton first league club to pay at least £7.85 an hour
• Club pledges no increase in ticket prices to cover cost
• Football’s grotesque injustice – huge fortunes, low-paid labour

Luton Town have adopted the living wage as their minimum level of pay for all staff.

The MP David Lammy, who has been campaigning for every Premier League club in London to follow that path, said Luton had become the first club among the 92 league clubs to commit to the living wage.

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Our favourite things online this week: from Wimbledon views to slam dunks

Featuring Enfield Town’s advertising, the essence of winners, Zach LaVine’s leaps, identical pole vaulters and the Premier League’s reluctance to pay the living wage

Forrest Allen, one of the foremost basketball coaches in the early 20th century, was no fan of the slam dunk. He set out his case for raising the hoop an extra two feet off the ground in an article entitled “Dunking Isn’t Basketball” for Country Gentleman magazine in 1935. “Those tall fellows were leaping at the 10-foot baskets and were literally ‘dunking’ the ball into the hoop, just as a doughnut is inelegantly dipped into the morning coffee,” he wrote, with an air of haughty despair. “And I say that is not basketball. My conception of the game is that goals should be shot and not dunked.”

The Premier League just secured a record breaking £5.14bn by selling the TV rights to their matches. However, these staggeringly wealthy football clubs still pay some of their employees less than the minimum amount needed to cover the cost of living in the UK, which is currently £9.15 per hour in London and £7.85 outside. It would take these staff 13 years to earn as much as some top players earn in a week. Do these clubs seriously expect us to believe that they can’t afford to pay their staff – who provide essential services such as cleaning, catering and stewarding – the basic amount needed to ensure a decent quality of life for them and their families? The chief executive of the Premier League, Richard Scudamore, recently indicated that he had no intention of taking action to make sure that clubs distribute their wealth equally amongst all those that make football matches possible. I am calling on Scudamore to change his mind about clubs’ obligations to their employees. I am asking him to take the lead on this issue by making the Premier League an accredited Living Wage employer and set an example to the 20 other clubs.

Elite athletes, at their telescoped apex, all have something in common with the way in which he whittled away everything in his being that might have distracted from the narrow scope of winning. There are no leisure activities for someone with these priorities; there is no leisure, period. If this does not seem like a club to which you’d like to belong, congratulations: you are not Arnold Palmer, or Michael Jordan, or Kobe Bryant, or Serena Williams, or Lance Armstrong. It’s not unusual for humans to hate losing, and there are plenty of athletes (and non-athletes) that value winning above anything else on earth. But while many and maybe most professional athletes fit those categories, there are others whose entire essences are signified by the idea of winning things, more things than everyone else.

“Just be original. I get guys sending folios and they look like they’ve just seen the back of a Sunday newspaper and thought ‘that’s what’s required’. If that’s what they get from their contracted agency, you’ve got to break out, you’ve got to get something that makes people think twice. If you’re mad on football and you think you’ve got a knowledge of the game, then you’ll get good pictures. But do it your way.”

This. pic.twitter.com/0XChWVofRz

Continue reading…

0

Our favourite things online this week: from Wimbledon views to slam dunks

Featuring Enfield Town’s advertising, the essence of winners, Zach LaVine’s leaps, identical pole vaulters and the Premier League’s reluctance to pay the living wage

Forrest Allen, one of the foremost basketball coaches in the early 20th century, was no fan of the slam dunk. He set out his case for raising the hoop an extra two feet off the ground in an article entitled “Dunking Isn’t Basketball” for Country Gentleman magazine in 1935. “Those tall fellows were leaping at the 10-foot baskets and were literally ‘dunking’ the ball into the hoop, just as a doughnut is inelegantly dipped into the morning coffee,” he wrote, with an air of haughty despair. “And I say that is not basketball. My conception of the game is that goals should be shot and not dunked.”

The Premier League just secured a record breaking £5.14bn by selling the TV rights to their matches. However, these staggeringly wealthy football clubs still pay some of their employees less than the minimum amount needed to cover the cost of living in the UK, which is currently £9.15 per hour in London and £7.85 outside. It would take these staff 13 years to earn as much as some top players earn in a week. Do these clubs seriously expect us to believe that they can’t afford to pay their staff – who provide essential services such as cleaning, catering and stewarding – the basic amount needed to ensure a decent quality of life for them and their families? The chief executive of the Premier League, Richard Scudamore, recently indicated that he had no intention of taking action to make sure that clubs distribute their wealth equally amongst all those that make football matches possible. I am calling on Scudamore to change his mind about clubs’ obligations to their employees. I am asking him to take the lead on this issue by making the Premier League an accredited Living Wage employer and set an example to the 20 other clubs.

Elite athletes, at their telescoped apex, all have something in common with the way in which he whittled away everything in his being that might have distracted from the narrow scope of winning. There are no leisure activities for someone with these priorities; there is no leisure, period. If this does not seem like a club to which you’d like to belong, congratulations: you are not Arnold Palmer, or Michael Jordan, or Kobe Bryant, or Serena Williams, or Lance Armstrong. It’s not unusual for humans to hate losing, and there are plenty of athletes (and non-athletes) that value winning above anything else on earth. But while many and maybe most professional athletes fit those categories, there are others whose entire essences are signified by the idea of winning things, more things than everyone else.

“Just be original. I get guys sending folios and they look like they’ve just seen the back of a Sunday newspaper and thought ‘that’s what’s required’. If that’s what they get from their contracted agency, you’ve got to break out, you’ve got to get something that makes people think twice. If you’re mad on football and you think you’ve got a knowledge of the game, then you’ll get good pictures. But do it your way.”

This. pic.twitter.com/0XChWVofRz

Continue reading…

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Shame on the greed of my beloved Celtic FC | Kevin McKenna

Celtic FC are so rich, yet they cannot bring themselves to pay the living wage

A living tapestry slowly emerges from the walls of Celtic Park as you approach the main entrance to one of the cathedrals of European football. Over the last few years, thousands of otherwise unremarkable red bricks have been turned into memorial stones on which are inscribed the names of individuals and entire families who have stood here these last 100 years or so and supported their beloved Celtic FC. Many of the family names bear witness to the journey this club has made from its angry birth among the slums and soup kitchens of the East End of Glasgow, where it was immediately put to work providing funds for the poor Irish escaping famine and death in the country of their birth. I belong to this club and so have five generations of my family.

Ten days ago, at Celtic’s annual general meeting, the sacrifices and unstinting devotion of these people and their forebears were betrayed by those who claim to be the modern custodians of what the club is supposed to stand for. A motion by the Celtic Trust calling for Celtic to ensure that each of its employees is paid the living wage of £7.45 per hour rather than the minimum wage of £6.31 per hour was thrown out by the rich men and money-changers who hold sway at Celtic Park. Directly addressing them, Jeanette Findlay of the trust stated during the debate that preceded this act of corporate and social irresponsibility that it was a decision that “shamed you and shamed us”. It was all of that and then some.

For this is a football club that for decades has portrayed itself as the Mother Teresa of world soccer: scattering goodwill and charity in its wake; healing the sick and comforting the poor. The romantic narrative of its scrofulous origins has helped to spread Celtic’s fame well beyond Scotland and Ireland. While many of the descendants of the Catholic Irish who came to Scotland have become affluent, successful and influential, the fact remains that the Celtic support still occupies the lowest rung of Britain’s socioeconomic ladder. Its bedrock is in neighbourhoods of Glasgow’s East End and Lanarkshire where the indicators of poverty and illness are among the highest in Europe.

Many of those who are in work will be labouring for barely the national minimum wage. A top-up to the living wage would make a considerable improvement in their lives. This winter,they will encounter fuel poverty and food shortages. Many will need hand-outs from the increasing number of food banks in Glasgow. Yet, and let’s be frank here, the so-called living wage isn’t really a wage to live on at all. The Living Wage Foundation calculates that it is the minimum required to allow a person to rent property, run a car and eat healthily.

But then you might choose to include factors such as the ruthless exploitation by some landlords of the shortage of social housing, the extortion of the energy cartel, the vagaries of petrol prices and the onerous taxes on cigarettes and alcohol. A family of two parents and two children cannot survive on £7.45 an hour. Celtic likes to think that some of its traditions are rooted in the values of a close-knit family unit.

Companies that elect to become “living wage” companies are helping to build Britain’s economy by taking a long-term view on the health of their businesses. They are expressing appreciation of and respect for all their workers who, buoyed by that little bit extra in their pay packets, will put it back into the economy. No job is too menial or too unimportant not to be considered worthy and noble. In a civilised society, are we really saying that those among us who are cleaners or shelf-stackers do not deserve the dignity that goes with the living wage?

The plc directors of Celtic FC don’t seem to think so. Two of the three main reasons cited by the club for rejecting the living wage proposal were these: that it would cost £500,000 annually to implement, and that no other British club does it. Lest we forget; in the last two seasons, Celtic have spent around £10m on fees and wages for three strikers who would struggle to locate a coo’s arse with a satnav, let alone hit it with a banjo.

I would have thought that these were precisely why they should have opted for it. Celtic’s group revenue increased by 47.7% to £75.82m this year and its profit before tax was £9.74m. The remuneration of its chief executive, Peter Lawwell, was £999,591. The members of the plc board each receive a £25,000 emolument for the onerous task of attending monthly board meetings and travelling all over Europe first class. They include Dermot Desmond, one of Britain’s richest men, and Brian Wilson, the former Labour minister, who is an outspoken and eloquent campaigner against the iniquitous pattern of land ownership in Scotland. Like many other companies that refuse to implement the living wage, Celtic can comfortably afford to do so.

Following the AGM, Mr Lawwell, otherwise a very able husband of the club’s resources, attempted to explain further by pointing out that most of the 180 or so employees paid below the living wage were part-time and topping up existing salaries. Did it not occur to him that the main salaries of these people may be so low that they are forced to take a second job? Surely no one thinks that because many of them have an emotional attachment to the club they are happy to accept scant remuneration because that would simply be exploitation.

Many Celtic fans have already been betrayed by our church and those Labour politicians who failed to turn up last week for the vote on the bedroom tax.

Until 10 days ago, we thought we could at least rely on our football club. “Celtic is more than just a football club,” its directors like to proclaim. Well, now we know that we are not really that special at all.

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