Not-for-profit quality care for over 25 years

Belong announces enhanced Real Living Wage

Leading dementia care operator, Belong, will extend remuneration above the Real Living Wage for its colleagues in the New Year, increasing its starting salary to a minimum of £10 per hour.

From 1st January 2022, employees of all ages working at Belong’s state-of-the-art care villages and home care services across the North West and West Midlands will be paid a minimum of £10 per hour on joining Belong, increasing as they progress, according to the seniority and responsibilities of the role.

This latest increase to a £10 per hour starting rate widens the differential between Belong’s pay and the minimum National Living Wage, which, from April 2022, is set to rise to £9.50 per hour for those aged over 23, as set out in the government’s most recent budget. It is also higher than the Real Living Wage, which increased to £9.90 for workers outside London last month.

Chris Hughes, Chief Finance Officer at Belong, said: “As a not-for-profit organisation, Belong has always been committed to reinvesting in our people and it feels particularly important after what has been an extremely tough period.

“The pandemic has shone a light on the hard work and dedication of those working in the care industry and we are keen to ensure they are rewarded accordingly for their contribution.”

Belong’s occupancy is running at an average of 95% across the group of seven care villages, while average UK care home occupancy is still recovering from a fall to 79.4% in 2020 (Knight Frank 2021 UK Care Homes Trading Performance Review).

Chris Hughes continues: “The new rate applies to all colleagues from day one, regardless of their age, as we firmly believe that the rate paid should be determined by the role people are fulfilling rather than being affected by someone’s age. While we are always looking to do more for our people, we are proud to be paying all employees at or above the Real Living Wage, to be a Gold accredited Investor in People and to have recently featured in The Telegraph Workplace of the Year Awards 2021.”

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