Paid work is crucial to tackling poverty. However, many jobs are low paid, insecure, unrewarding and fail to act as a stepping stone into a future career. Low pay and the abuse of rights is increasingly the norm in many industries. We want better work for everyone, where those in work are treated with decency, respect and paid at least a living wage
What we will fund
Progression routes out of low-paid work
We are interested in work which seeks to improve the outcomes of low paid workers. This includes where we can increase insights into: the effectiveness of existing models of support; how best to target employers to improve employment practice; and with groups of low paid workers where there is little knowledge about what works. We will prioritise applications that can demonstrate a clear understanding of the challenges faced by workers stuck in low pay and how best to help them progress into better jobs. (Please note, it is not our aim to fund work which supports unemployed people into jobs).
Employment legal advice
In areas of law that fall outside of legal aid, We will support casework, representation and strategic legal work, which protects workers’ rights and tackles issues of discrimination. We will also fund tribunal work and particularly want to support work that ensures that workers receive the wages and/ or settlements they are entitled to.
Including campaigning, organising, policy work and research:
- Improving pay for those on low incomes.
- Addressing exploitative employment practices and discrimination, especially for those in insecure work, including the self-employed, interns and agency staff. We will support groups organising low-paid workers to protect their rights.
- Improving the practice of public agencies. For example, those supporting people into work such as Jobcentre Plus, and those with responsibility for enforcement of rights such as HMRC.
- Promoting good employment practice, including employers offering better training, flexible working, access to childcare, support, and fringe benefits such as affordable credit to their staff.
- The future of work such as the rise of automation and the changing structure of businesses, such as the growth of platforms (such as Uber and Deliveroo).
Improving the capacity and skills of civil society
We will fund employment-related issues projects. This means we will fund second-tier organisations to support other groups to improve their practice, share knowledge and influence.