Housing costs drive Living Wage to €12.30 per hour

Housing costs drive Living Wage to €12.30 per hour

The Living Wage in Ireland now stands at €12.30 per hour.

That is an increase of 40c compared to the rate in 2018, according to the Living Wage Technical Group.

The rate is now €2.50 more than the minimum statutory wage of €9.80.

Professor of Social Policy at UCD and a member of the technical group, Dr Micheál Collins, says that the continued increase in housing costs is one major factor behind the increase.

"When we're talking about low income workers, we are talking about rental costs and those rental costs have been escalating quite rapidly in Dublin and elsewhere and that has driven up the living costs of low income workers," said Dr Collins.

Rent now contributes to over half of minimum living costs for a person in Dublin.

Dr Collins said that the lowest paid workers are having to cut back on the basics.

"Minimum wage currently in €9.80 per hour so there is a €2.50 difference between the minimum that the government by law sets for workers and what corresponds to the minimum for a basic standard of living," said Dr Collins.

"That really just highlights the fact that low paid workers - certainly those below the living wage - are cutting back on what are basic items in terms of their day-to-day standard of living."

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