Denbighshire County Council should become a Real Living Wage Employer says the Plaid group as the authority prepares to vote on its annual budget later this month.
The minimum wage as of April will be £7.83 per hour for those aged over 25. The Real Living Wage Foundation has calculated that the Real Living Wage for all those living outside of London should be a minimum of £8.75 an hour.
Denbighshire County Council employs over 1,200 people on less than the Real Living Wage.
Plaid Cymru Councillor Mabon ap Gwynfor (pictured) said: “Denbighshire County Council has a chance to show that we value our workforce by ensuring that each and every person employed by the council received the real living wage.
"Earning a Real Living Wage has many proven benefits – the number of absences and sick leave falls; staff turnover decreases meaning less money spent on advertising, hiring and training new employees all the time. It results in a happier and more dedicated workforce.
“Around a quarter of Denbighshire County Council’s workforce earn less than the Real Living Wage, the vast majority of them women.
"In-work poverty is on the rise, and many people are having to double-job in order to make ends meet. Denbighshire Council should not be part of a system that forces people into poverty.
"We in Plaid Cymru have called for this policy to be adopted before, and we believe that the time has come for us to treat our workforce with respect and dignity by ensuring that they all receive at least the Real Living Wage.”
Cllr ap Gwynfor went on to say that the Plaid Cymru Group will not support any budget that sees cuts in frontline services: “We understand that Denbighshire Council has been given a poor settlement by the Welsh Government and that there is a squeeze on finances.
"But we will not support any budget that proposes to cut frontline services. Our Social Services, Education services, and public transport have been crying out for funds, and we will do everything that we can to protect them and if possible boost them.”