21 October 2018   |  Last Updated 19-12-2014 12:40

      Thursday 11, December 2014

      Manchester City hit back at protesters

      MANCHESTER CITY have issued a response to the protesters demanding the club pays all of their staff the living wage.

      A group of fans were out in force on Thursday to hand in a letter adressed to the Chairman, Mr Khaldoon Al Mubarak, asking him to introduce the living wage at Manchester City.

      This came as part of a week of protests by fans at other Premier League clubs over poverty pay for non-playing staff at football clubs, leading to the announcement that Chelsea became the first Premier League club to be accredited as a Living Wage employer, putting more pressure on City to follow.

      A spokesperson from the club said that although they are not yet accredited, Manchester City are commited to paying their employees the living wage.

      They state that in the modern economy, workers from contracted out companies tend to suffer low pay and although the club cannot directly change this, they are pushing their companies to pay their staff a living wage.

      “Since May 2013 Manchester City Football Club has paid the living wage to all directly employed staff. The Club also has a robust sustainable procurement policy for capital works that includes a requirement that suppliers already pay the living wage or are working towards it, and whether suppliers pay the living wage is part of the selection process for new contracts.

      "City engages employment and procurement practices that are robust and socially aware. These take into account of the need for affordable living, best care in welfare, training and skills development, and local opportunity including apprenticeships and new skills programmes. 

      "There is a huge amount being undertaken to ensure there is a positive impact of any Club investment for local people and the local economy overall, with sustainable outputs and outcomes.”

      The response comes after Manchester City this week unveiled their new £200m training complex.

      The letter issued by the group of passionate supporters congratulated Manchester City on their fantastic work in the community, but mentioned that paying staff the living wage would 'fit perfectly' with the good work City are doing.

      Chris Fabby who organised the protest isn't going to let the case lie on the shelf.

      He said: "We are calling on our club to do the right thing and pay their staff the living wage of £7.85 an hour.

      "They have given us the commitment but their staff from contracted out companies, most of which who are from round here are still suffering.

      "They do fantastic work on and off the pitch and we are asking that they set a date for the commitment we have asked them for."

      Whilst supporter-owned FC United became the first football club in Britain to be an accredited living wage employer, Luton Town and Hearts have also gained accreditation this week.

      The response from City doesn't fully satisfy the protestors, but with none of the other 18 Premier League clubs committing to paying even their own staff the living wage, the foundations are set for others to build on.

      By Eleanor Thomason