FC United of Manchester has led the way in becoming the first football club to be accredited by the Living Wage Foundation as a Living Wage employer.
The commitment to signing up to the scheme means everybody working at the club, whether they are permanent employees or third-party contractors, receive a minimum hourly wage of £7.65.
The sum is significantly higher than the national minimum wage which currently stands at £6.50, and Living Wage Foundation director, Rhys Moore, hopes it persuades other clubs in the country to follow suit.
“We are delighted to accredit FC United of Manchester as a Living Wage employer,” he said.
“Unfortunately, despite calls from many supporters’ groups and season ticket holders, no Premiership football club has been accredited as a Living Wage employer.
“We welcome the leadership FC United Manchester is showing and hope other clubs, including some of the big names, big money teams, follow their stance and reward a hard day’s work with a fair day’s pay.”
The Living Wage is an hourly rate set independently and is updated annually and calculated according to the basic cost of living using the ‘Minimum Income Standard’ for the UK.
The scheme is well supported and has received public backing from the Prime Minister and Labour Leader Ed Miliband.
FC United company secretary Lindsey Howard expressed her delight at the club signing up to the scheme and reveals it will help those who struggle financially.
She said: “FC United is happy not only to be Living Wage providers but also to raise awareness of this scheme.
“It is an important extension of our values and ethos as a community social enterprise.
“We also know that many people struggle to make ends meet on minimum wage.
“The living wage, and other policies that address the issue of low-paid workers, can make employees feel less like commodities as well as being part of a positive step in the fight against poverty.”
Celtic Research and Citizens UK were among others who congratulated FC United on making the move and tweeted their reaction on Twitter.
Well done @FCUnitedMcr in becoming the first club to pay employees the living wage. I suppose the “first senior club” is still up for grabs.
— CelticResearch (@CelticResearch) October 16, 2014
— Citizens UK (@CitizensUK) October 16, 2014
Main image courtesy of Pi Alfa via YouTube, with thanks.