- Stuart guided Aviva to its accreditation in 2012, and then oversaw the insurer becoming a Principal Partner organisation and joining the Foundation’s Advisory Council in 2014
- In 2016, Stuart demonstrated his commitment to the movement by becoming the second Chair of the Living Wage Advisory Council
- Under Stuart’s leadership, Aviva also became a Living Wage Funder, committing to tackle low pay by encouraging the organisations they support to pay the real Living Wage, and one of the first two firms to publicly commit to the Living Hours standard
At the 2021 Living Wage Champion Awards, Stuart Wright, Aviva’s property and facilities director, was awarded the Living Wage Lifetime Achievement Award, recognising his stellar commitment and dedication to the movement for almost a decade.
As well as guiding Aviva through its initial accreditation and subsequent major milestones, including becoming a Principal Partner in 2014, Stuart has also personally gone above and beyond to support the movement, speaking at many of the Foundation’s most important events in his capacity as Chair of the Advisory Council.
Working alongside Aviva colleagues to champion this crucial campaign has been inspiring and humbling.
Some of these appearances included keynote speeches at several Living Wage Weeks and the 2019 Champion Awards. Stuart has also encouraged and supported others at Aviva to become spokespeople for the Living Wage movement, including Lynne Hanner, a Cleaning Supervisor at Aviva’s Norwich offices, who has spoken about the importance of receiving a Living Wage at Parliamentary events.
The annual Living Wage Champion Awards celebrate notable employers that pay the Living Wage and this year they recognised 20 years of the Living Wage campaign. Last night’s awards were hosted by YolanDa Brown, well-known saxophonist, composer and broadcaster. The awards were sponsored by Aviva.
Stuart said: “The Living Wage movement is filled with incredible people. Being involved with the Living Wage and working alongside Aviva colleagues to champion this crucial campaign has been an inspiring and humbling experience. Providing people with financial security, clarity and certainty has never been more important.
“I thank all members of the team, past and present and to all our Living Wage Employers, Places, Funders and Service Providers for their support. And if you are not accredited - make the commitment, it is now, and always will be, the right thing to do.”
Laura Gardiner, Director, Living Wage Foundation, said: “Tonight we recognise a Champion of the Living Wage, in the truest sense of the word. Stuart’s commitment to the movement has been unshakeable, from overseeing Aviva’s initial accreditation, becoming a Principal Partner and finally taking a leading role in the Living Wage Advisory Council. Even beyond this, his personal dedication to the Living Wage, hosting and speaking at many of our most important calendar events and chairing the Advisory Council, sets a lofty standard that we can all hope to follow, and I congratulate him on receiving a thoroughly well-deserved Lifetime Achievement Award.”
About the Living Wage
The real Living Wage is the only rate calculated according to what people need to make ends meet. It provides a voluntary benchmark for employers that choose to take a stand by ensuring their staff earn a wage that meets the costs and pressures they face in their everyday lives.
The UK Living Wage is currently £9.30 per hour. There is a separate London Living Wage rate of £10.75 per hour to reflect the higher costs of transport, childcare and housing in the capital. These figures are calculated annually by the Resolution Foundation and overseen by the Living Wage Commission, based on the best available evidence on living standards in London and the UK.
The Living Wage Foundation is the organisation at the heart of the movement of businesses, organisations and individuals who campaign for the simple idea that a hard day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay. The Living Wage Foundation receives guidance and advice from the Living Wage Advisory Council. The Foundation is supported by our principal partners: Aviva; Joseph Rowntree Foundation; KPMG; Linklaters; Nationwide; Nestle; Resolution Foundation; Oxfam; Trust for London; People’s Health Trust; and Queen Mary University of London.
What about the Government’s national living wage?
In July 2015 the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that the UK Government would introduce a compulsory ‘national living wage’. It was introduced in April 2016, originally applying for all workers over the age of 25, and, as of April 2021, is currently £8.91 an hour and applies for workers over the age of 23. The rate is different to the Living Wage rates calculated by the Living Wage Foundation. The government rate is based on median earnings while the Living Wage Foundation rates are calculated according to the cost of living in London and the UK.
Notes to editors:
- For information on how Aviva is helping our people, customers and communities impacted by COVID-19 visit: www.aviva.com/covid-19-our-response/
- We exist to be with people when it really matters, throughout their lives. We have been taking care of people for more than 320 years, in line with our purpose of being ‘with you today, for a better tomorrow’. In 2020, we paid £30.6 billion in claims and benefits to our customers.
- Aviva is invested in our people, our customers, our communities and our planet. In 2021, we announced our plan to become a Net Zero carbon emissions company by 2040, the most demanding target of any major insurance company in the world. This plan means Net Zero carbon emissions from our investments by 2040; setting out a clear pathway to get there with a cut of 25% in the carbon intensity of our investments by 2025 and of 60% by 2030; and Net Zero carbon emissions from our own operations and supply chain by 2030. Aviva has been leading this agenda for decades: Aviva was the first international insurer to go operationally carbon neutral in 2006 and we are champions of renewable energy and energy storage at our offices, allowing us to achieve our 2030 carbon reduction target (70% reduction on 2010 levels) 10 years early. Find out more about our climate goals at www.aviva.com/climate-goals and our sustainability ambition at www.aviva.com/sustainability.
- Aviva is a Living Wage and Living Hours employer and provides market-leading benefits for our people, including flexible working, paid carers leave and equal parental leave. Find out more at www.aviva.com/social-purpose
- We are focused on the UK, Ireland and Canada where we have leading market positions and significant potential. We will invest for growth in these markets. We will also transform our performance and improve our efficiency. Our transformation will be underpinned by managing our balance sheet prudently, reducing debt and increasing our financial resilience. We also have strategic investments in Singapore, China and India.
- Total group assets under management at Aviva group as at 31 December 2020 are £535 billion and our Solvency II shareholder capital surplus is £12.5 billion as at 31 March 2021. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE 100 index.
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