Scottish Canals becomes 700th Living Wage accredited employer

Scottish Canals has become the 700th Scottish-based Living Wage accredited employer.

Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work Keith Brown made the announcement while visiting Scottish Canals at The Falkirk Wheel where he met staff benefiting from their commitment to fair work principles.

The Scottish Government has set a target of reaching 1,000 Scottish-based Living Wage Accredited Employers by autumn 2017.

Mr Brown said: “This is a significant step in our drive to promote fairer working environments for Scottish employees and ensures people’s basic wage continues to meet the real cost of living.

“Paying the Real Living Wage makes sense for businesses. It’s an investment in people and all the evidence shows it leads to increased productivity and reduced staff absence, while sending a strong signal to customers about fairness.

“I am particularly pleased that Scottish Canals has made this commitment, setting a good example to other firms around the country – the 700th company to do so since the beginning of Living Wage Week in October 2016.0

“We will continue to work with the ‘Scottish Living Wage Accreditation Initiative’ to encourage more businesses to recognise the benefits of paying the Real Living Wage as we move towards meeting our target of reaching 1,000 Living Wage accredited employers by autumn 2017.”

Andrew Thin, Chair of Scottish Canals, said: “We are proud to be a Scottish Living Wage accredited employer. Thanks to our dedicated workforce, Scotland’s canals are in the midst of a renaissance and are making an increasingly vital contribution to the nation’s economy in the form of tourism, place making, and job creation.

Our staff are central to ensuring our inland waterways continue to deliver all they can for all of the people of Scotland and, as a public body, it’s only right that we celebrate and give fair reward for that hard work.

Andrew Thin, Chair of Scottish Canals

Peter Kelly, Director, The Poverty Alliance said: “Congratulations to Scottish Canals on becoming the 700th Living Wage employer in Scotland.  The movement for the real Living Wage is growing ever more powerful and reaches across the private, public and third sectors in Scotland. The Poverty Alliance believe that by paying the real Living Wage, one which reflects the actual cost of living, progressive employers are having a positive impact in the lives of families and communities. It’s good for people and it’s also good for businesses as it can boost an employer’s brand,  productivity, and improve the retention of staff.”

Notes to Editors

  • The new Real Living Wage rate was announced at the end of October 2016 as £8.45 an hour
  • Scottish Canals is responsible to the Scottish Government for the management and development of five Scottish canals as well as the surrounding estate and The Falkirk Wheel. See or follow @ScottishCanals for more information
  • The Forth & Clyde, Union and Monkland canals in the Lowlands, the Crinan Canal in Argyll and the Caledonian Canal in the Highlands, together extend over 137 miles from coast to coast, across country and into the cities of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness
  • Built two hundred years ago to fire the Industrial Revolution, today the canals contribute to the Scottish Government agenda of developing a Greener; Healthier; Smarter; Safer and Stronger; and Wealthier and Fairer Scotland by acting as a catalyst for sustainable economic development, regeneration and tourism; contributing to education, biodiversity, heritage and promoting active living and healthier lifestyles
  • Today Scottish Canals is utilising these 18th century assets along with innovative technology to tackle modern problems. Through working with partners to create pioneering systems, Scottish Canals is helping to combat flooding and driving positive transformation in some of Scotland’s most disadvantaged areas
  • The Forth & Clyde, Union, Monkland, Caledonian and Crinan canals are recognised as Scheduled Monuments and attract 22million visits per year. See for more information

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