Premier League clubs ‘should pay living wage’ to staff

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Chelsea is one of only four Premier League football clubs to have signed up to the Living Wage Foundation

Premier League clubs have been urged to pay all staff above the minimum wage after spending £1.41bn on players.

Many cleaners, security guards, caterers and other staff do not earn enough money to cover the cost of living, the charity Citizens UK said.

It said only four out of 20 Premier League clubs have committed to paying the voluntary living wage rate.

The clubs who have not signed up have been accused of losing touch with “the lives and struggles of workers”.

Companies accredited by the Living Wage Foundation commit to paying all staff and any third-party contract workers the voluntary rate of £9 an hour and £10.55 in London, higher than the statutory UK National Minimum Wage of £8.21.

Everton, Liverpool, Chelsea and West Ham have all made the pledge – while some clubs outside the top league, such as Championship side Luton, also pay the voluntary rate.

‘Not right’

“I struggle to put food on the table for my family and I often have to have cut-price meals,” said a cleaner who works at Manchester United’s Old Trafford stadium.

The cleaner, who did not want to be named, said he gets paid £7.80 an hour.

“Considering the amount of money in football, it would be great to see the club paying all their staff a fair and decent wage,” he said.

Premier League clubs made a record combined revenue of £4.8bn in the 2017-18 season.

By the end of transfer deadline day on Thursday the top clubs in English football had spent £1.41bn in a summer of signing new players – just short of the £1.43bn record set in 2017.

Citizens UK said a new football season was starting with employees “left on the breadline” which was “not right when clubs are splashing out record fees on players”.

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