National Express gains living wage accreditation

National Express Bus LW

National Express has been accredited as a living wage employer by the Living Wage Foundation.

The Birmingham-based organisation has committed to pay all UK employees the living wage rate of £8.25 an hour, ensuring the same wage rate for all agency and contracted staff.

The move will benefit around 350 employees.

The living wage was introduced at National Express’ bus division on 3 January 2016. It will be rolled out at its coach and rail businesses by the end of 2017.

The living wage is calculated according to the basic cost of living in the UK, and is updated annually. Employers choose to pay the wage on a voluntary basis.

It is distinct from the government’s statutory national living wage rate of £7.20, which will come into effect in April 2016 for employees aged 25 and over.

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Peter Coates, managing director of National Express UK Bus, said: “Our staff do a great job helping hundreds of thousands of people get to work and school and to see their family and friends every day. We are always looking at what more we can do to recognise this hard work and committing to become a living wage employer testifies to our determination to be the best possible employer.”

Sarah Vero, director of the Living Wage Foundation, added: “National Express is the first private transport group to accredit, and we hope their announcement and the leadership that they are showing will lay down a marker in the transport sector.”