Homecare provider to pay Real Living Wage

Homecare services provider Local Solutions has pledged to pay all its 400 front-line staff in Liverpool city region and North Wales the Real Living Wage. Tony McDonough reports

Senior leadership team members at Local Solutions, Liverpool. Picture by Jason Roberts


A Liverpool-based homecare business that provides homecare services for vulnerable people across Merseyside and North Wales is pledging to pay its 400 front-line staff the Real Living Wage.

Local Solutions, a registered charity, has raised carer pay three separate times and almost halved the gap in earnings between all staff since April 2021. Now after a staff consultation new chief executive Tom Harrison is sanctioning a further increase.

In April the Government-mandated National Living Wage will be raised to £9.50 and hour for people aged 23 and above, £9.18 for those aged 21-22, £6.83 for 18-20-year-olds, £4.81 for those aged 16-17 and the same rate for apprentices.

However, a growing number of employers are pledging to pay the Real Living Wage of £9.90 an hour. This is not mandatory and is calculated by the Living Wage Foundation according to the minimum they believe people need to live on. They recommend it for all workers above the age of 18.

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Despite the vital role they play in the care of vulnerable people, those in the care sector are traditionally poorly paid with rates below those earned by workers in the National Health Service.

Tom Harrison explained his decision to pay Local Solutions staff the higher rate. He said: “This was a carefully made decision but something that was a priority for us. These carers and support workers are the people who have been there for us throughout the pandemic and we are doing everything we can to support them – because they deserve it.

“We have a responsibility to lead on frontline pay and giving all staff a rise to the recommended Real Living Wage is a great first step. It wasn’t easy to do but they are all heroes and it’s important we look after the front line.”

Local Solutions also offers other employee benefits. They include paid training, discounts at Local Solution’s Watersports Centre and access to health supportive programmes among many others.

It’s all part of a drive by the charitable enterprise to ensure the 33,000 people Local Solutions reaches out to across Merseyside and North Wales are well cared for and supported.

Tom added: “There is not enough funding in the care system, but we wanted to take immediate steps to ensure that our fantastic carers and support workers are not losing out. An immediate pay rise now to a minimum of £9.90 per hour plus a commitment to continuing as a Real Living Wage Employer demonstrates our values and priorities.”

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