Living Wage in Scottish Football

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at on 8 September 2016.

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Photo of Richard Leonard Richard Leonard Labour

I thank James Dornan for bringing this important matter to the floor of this Parliament. For my part, I do wish to associate myself with all his comments in his opening speech.

I pay tribute to the magnificent work of the Poverty Alliance in campaigning for a living wage, in promoting the living wage and in diligently accrediting private businesses, public bodies and third sector organisations that apply to become living wage employers in Scotland.

In recent days, I have asked the Minister for Employability and Training in committee and the Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work in this chamber if they will consider whether a target of just 1,000 accredited living wage employers in Scotland by this time next year is ambitious enough. That is not a counsel of despair—far from it; it is a rallying cry of hope. With over 360,000 private enterprises in Scotland alone, I think that 1,000 employers is far too timid a target. I make that argument not to stretch the targets for the Poverty Alliance within its existing resources; I make it, gently, in order to set more ambitious targets for the Poverty Alliance, but with substantially increased resources.