By Lyndsey Hall
The average wage in the UK is £13 less than ten years ago, according to a study by an independent think-tank.
The Resolution Foundation also found that job insecurity is now “widespread”, with 800,000 workers on zero-hours contracts. Despite this, 2.1 million more people are in employment since the financial crisis of 2008, 1.2 million of whom live in the poorest third of households.
The foundation said this was “a much needed bright spark amidst the gloom”.
Senior economic analyst Stephen Clarke said: “While employment is at a record high, Britain is still some way off full employment and too much work remains low-paid and insecure. Steps to provide advance notice of shifts and a right to a regular contract for those working regular hours on a zero-hour contract would also help those in work who have precious little job security.”
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said the government was “turning a blind eye” to a crisis in living standards: “It’s taking wages longer to recover from this crash than it did after the Great Depression.”
A government spokesperson said efforts were under way to give workers in zero-hours jobs a right to request more stable contracts. “We have more people in work than ever before, and the National Living Wage has helped to deliver the fastest earnings boost for the lowest paid in 20 years. Through our Good Work plan, we are going further to give millions of workers major new rights and protections, including increased financial security for workers on flexible contracts.”
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