The Church of England has been criticised by a number of MPs and businesses after it was revealed that they have been failing to pay the living wage despite telling other businesses to do so. The church had paying the living wage was necessary to allow employees to “live decently” but admitted paying lower wages itself.
Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, said that the situation was “embarrassing” whilst Charlie Elphicke told the Sun newspaper that:
“It’s astonishing that the Church of England can call for the living wage to be paid by employers but don’t pay it themselves.”
One of the jobs paying beneath the minimum wage was at Canterbury Cathedral, the seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury, which offered £6.70 per hour for a kiosk assistant. The national living wage for areas outside of London is £7.85 and £9.15 inside London.
John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York, had said that:
“Our call for a Living Wage recognises that we need to value each and every person and that people should be paid a fair wage for a fair day’s work.”
The church said that it wasn’t in a position to pay the living wage to all employees but didn’t comment on how that related to the comments made by John Sentamu which suggested that all employers should be paid a fair wage.