Poole Council staff ‘forced to use food banks to survive’

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A POOLE councillor has claimed that council staff are being forced to use food banks and take out pay day loans to survive.

Cllr Phil Eades is calling on colleagues to support a motion urging the council to pay its entire staff at least the living wage. He says recently elected councillors have their first chance to, “make a real difference to Borough employees lives”.

He was among 10 Liberal Democrat members who originally signed a motion calling on Borough of Poole to pay its staff at least £7.85 an hour.

The motion, which has been before the council efficiency and effectiveness overview and scrutiny committee, is due to go back to full council next Tuesday (June 23).

“Bearing in mind that the Borough recently declared a £2.5million surplus for 2014/15 and that it is now sitting on £30million of council taxpayers money in reserves, the sole argument against paying our staff the living wage (that it costs too much money) is a very poor one indeed,” said Cllr Eades.

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He said council papers going to members next week assert that it would cost, “only £55,000 per annum, or less than £1 per household in the borough”.

Cllr Eades added: “There is evidence in front of councillors that a number of borough employees have had to use food banks, take out pay day loans and apply to the local union hardship fund.

“The Borough must set the standard by which all large firms in Poole are judged in paying the living wage and should be a leader in this field,” he added.

Anything to add, suggest, advise Mr Robert Syms Mp? No? You’re diary’s full that day? Hardly a surprise…..

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(Article courtesy of Bournemouth Echo 2015)

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