Ed Miliband's proposals to make the living wage a central tenant of the Labour Party's next manifesto have brought renewed attention to the role of ethics and social responsibility in business: we now have a rare opportunity to make the point that doing business responsibly is entirely compatible with both profitability and competitive advantage.
Political parties who want to be in the running for the next election will have to start taking notice of public anger about the UK's unacceptable levels of income inequality. They must set out credible and ambitious policies to achieve a meaningful reduction in our destructive levels of income inequality and arrest the damage to our health, society and economy.
Investors and business leaders - on whom the country's economic recovery depends, can no longer be certain of the UK's liberty and protection under the law. At the very time other crisis economies are cutting costs and increasing certainty, business in the UK will have to contend not just with statutory rules and the costs they impose on employers. They will also face the consequences of pressure-group politics, in which politicians abandon the labour market to the unpredictable operations of twilight law.
We can bemoan the privatisation agenda all we like, but it exists nonetheless, and I'd rather spend my time supporting students to work with other workers and unions to negotiate better conditions, including a living wage.
Of course all businesses should value hard working talent, but the introduction of a compulsory Living Wage could hinder more young people than it helps.
London's Living Wage must increase by 25p an hour, to £8.55, Mayor Boris Johnson has announced, worth an extra £4.5m to workers
Plans to deliver a "living wage" of at least £7.20 per hour for millions of people in the public and private sector are being
One in five British workers are paid less than the living wage, a study showed today. Some 4.82 million UK workers receive
On Monday almost a million workers received a pay rise, sort of. These workers, most of whom are women, are those who occupy the many jobs up and down the country that pay the National Minimum Wage (NMW). For anyone scanning the job centre website you'll see plenty of these jobs.
This week, London will celebrate not one, but two great traditions. The first, of course, is the Olympic tradition: a global reaffirmation of the values of athletic performance and fair competition. The second is the still-contested tradition of paying a fair living wage to all willing workers.