Cllr Ed Davie is the Cabinet Member for Children and Young People and a councillor in Thornton ward.
Lambeth Labour councillors have written to all family doctors in the borough offering support to gain London Living Wage accreditation.
GP surgeries in the borough employ about 1,000 people, and although most pay above the London Living Wage rate, currently £10.85 an hour, to directly employed staff, many contracted workers like cleaners are missing out.
By gaining accreditation employers promise to pay all workers, including those they contract in, the London Living Wage rate as soon as possible, like when a contract is renewed.
So far Lambeth Walk and Herne Hill Group practices have gained accreditation and we want others to follow their example.
Lambeth Council has been accredited since 2012 and last year supported Guy’s and St Thomas’s and South London and the Maudsley NHS Trusts to gain accreditation. Between them just these three organisations employ over 30,000 local people.
A full-time worker on the government’s minimum wage would get a pay rise of about £100 a week if they moved to the London Living Wage rate.
Sadly 20% of workers in Lambeth are paid below the London Living Wage rate which, along with out of work poverty made worse by government cuts to benefits, means that nearly half of all children in Lambeth are growing up in poverty.
Poverty robs children and their families of access to healthy food, opportunities and a sense of control over their own lives.
Even before the pandemic there was a healthy life expectancy gap, between the least and most deprived, of 19 years in the UK. That is nearly two decades of additional chronic illness just because someone is poor.
That is why Lambeth Labour is determined to use all its power and influence to tackle poverty and will be developing a new Child Poverty Strategy to take more action.
In our recent Lambeth Labour budget, we extended 100% council tax relief to a further 7,000 of the most deprived householdsn putting £1.6 million in the pockets of Lambeth’s poorest families.
We are also continuing to support all employers in the borough to gain Living Wage accreditation and use their hiring and buying powers to get as many local people as possible job, training and apprenticeship opportunities.
We know housing costs are a major reason for family poverty and we are going further than our commitment to build 1,000 new council rent homes as well as investing hundreds of millions in improving our own social housing stock to help reduce energy bills.
Lambeth Labour Council has also distributed millions of pounds of IT, wifi, food and grants to residents and businesses over the last year to support people through the pandemic.
Our fantastic Mayor of London Sadiq Khan is also helping by protecting free public transport for under-18s and investing in thousands of new Green jobs.
In the council and city hall Labour is working to make jobs pay fairly and for everyone to get the chances they deserve.
Cllr Ed Davie