A group consisting of over 100 investors has now filed a resolution requesting that, by the middle of 2023, supermarket giant Sainsbury’s accredits itself with the UK campaign organisation known as the Living Wage Foundation.
Shareholders are now set to vote on the measure in July, marking a UK first. It will require 75 per cent approval in order to pass.
The current cost of living crisis in Britain is tightening consumer budgets, with the prices of food, fuel and energy soaring. Employees at UK supermarkets are among the individuals who are worst affected. According to statistics from the Food Aid Network, around two fifths of supermarket employees are earning salaries below the real Living Wage, with an increasing number being driven to use food banks.
The Living Wage Foundation has established what it deems the minimum hourly rate required for workers to be able to afford food, housing and cover other essential needs. At present, the rate is £11.05 in London and £9.90 for the rest of the country. While 50 per cent of the firms in the FTSE-100 are officially accredited by the organisation, none of the UK’s supermarkets have yet signed up. Additionally, the Living Wage is not yet universally accepted as the official minimum amount needed to live in Britain.
Investors seeking guidance on their rights regarding the companies they invest in can seek out financial advice in Chester, London and other major UK cities.
Over the last five years, Sainsbury’s has increased its pay rates by 25 per cent, and its current hourly rate is higher than rival supermarkets such as Asda and Tesco.