Charity takes decision to offer staff an optional one-off cost of living payment, helping with rising costs this winter
The Wallich has set up a Cost of Living Taskforce to work on ways to alleviate the predicted financial pressures of 2022 for staff and clients.
In one of many initiatives, all staff employed by The Wallich on 31 October 2022 received a payment from the scheme.
How much each employee could get is banded by salary, with lowest earners taking home the highest amount.
Part-time staff were categorised by their take-home salary, not pro-rata, and staff who felt they didn’t need the payment could opt-out.
Cost of living crisis
Inflation is causing an unprecedented rise in the cost of living in the UK.
For example, the ONS recently reported that around 6 in 10 (60%) renters reported finding it difficult to afford their energy bills, and around 4 in 10 (39%) found it difficult to afford their rent payments.
In response, The Wallich Cost of Living Taskforce main aims are:
- Providing a digital resource bank with useful information, tips and links to trusted websites
- Regularly communicating with staff and the people we support with key updates and information, using accessible and plain language
Public affairs and campaigning
- Influence policy and decision makers to make structural changes at a higher level
Funding and partnerships
- To identify opportunities that would benefit our charity, staff and / or service users E.g. funding opportunities, partnerships, appropriate networks, information events etc.
Campaigning for more help and reform in the sector
Salaries in our sector are largely dictated by the government Housing Support Grant and the commissioning process.
Research published by Cymorth Cymru has shone a light on the impact of the cost of living crisis on frontline homelessness and housing support workers in Wales.
Evidence from more than 720 frontline workers revealed the huge financial pressures they are facing, as they provide critical support to tens of thousands of people across the country.
Together, organisations across the sector are demanding that:
- The Welsh Government should increase the Housing Support Grant budget for 2023/24 so that homelessness and housing support workers can receive a pay increase to help them with the upcoming cost of living pressures.
- The UK Government should take further action to reduce energy prices and provide financial support to help people cope with existing and future energy costs.
- HMRC should increase the mileage rate to ensure that frontline workers are not out-of-pocket as a result of using their car to undertake their work duties.
The Wallich Cost of Living Taskforce will be continuing to find ways to alleviate the stress of the cost of living crisis for their staff and the people they support this winter.