Amazon hands pay rise to 37,000 UK staff to take them above Living Wage

Joe Curtis
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Amazon workers will earn above the UK living wage for the first time (Source: Getty)

Amazon is set to raise pay for UK staff above the Real Living Wage from the start of next month, expected to benefit around 37,000 workers.

The retail giant - which recently hit a $1 trillion valuation - will pay London staff £10.50 per hour from 1 November and UK-wide staff £9.50 per hour.

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Both its 17,000-strong full-time staff and its 20,000 temp agency staff, drafted in for seasonal shopping, will receive the wage boost.

London staff are currently paid £8.20 per hour, with UK staff outside the capital earning £8 per hour.

It means Amazon’s workers will earn more than the Real Living Wage - which is calculated to correlate with the actual cost of living and stands at £10.20 per hour in the capital and £8.75 outside London. The statutory UK minimum wage is £7.83 an hour for people over the age of 25.

"We're excited to announce Amazon is raising our minimum wage for all full-time, part-time, seasonal, and temporary UK employees," said Doug Gurr, Amazon’s UK country manager.

"This will impact more than 37,000 employees across the country, resulting in higher pay for them and their families."

A similar pay rise to $15 for US staff affects more than 250,000 full-time employees, and 100,000 seasonal workers.

The pay rise comes for staff as Amazon faces criticism over its treatment of workers.

“We listened to our critics, thought hard about what we wanted to do, and decided we want to lead,” said founder Jeff Bezos. “We’re excited about this change and encourage our competitors and other large employers to join us.”

Read more: EU competition watchdog launches probe into Amazon's business practices

Stateside, Amazon will also advocate for an increase in the minimum wage.

“The current rate of $7.25 was set nearly a decade ago,” said Jay Carney, senior vice president of Amazon Global Corporate Affairs. “We intend to advocate for a minimum wage increase that will have a profound impact on the lives of tens of millions of people and families across this country.”

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