Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

Isle of Man voluntary living wage rises to £9.76

Coins falling from a wallet Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The island's voluntary living wage has been increased by £1.15

The living wage on the Isle of Man has risen to £9.76, the government has confirmed.

The hourly rate, which is voluntary on the island, had been unchanged since it was first set at £8.61 in 2017.

Policy and reform minister Chris Thomas said the new rate was calculated to "alleviate poverty" and help those who were "struggling to get by".

The National Living Wage in the UK is £9, rising to £10.55 for those living in London.

Although the figure is not enforceable, the Manx government has pledged to pay those in "established posts" in the public sector "no less than the living wage".

A spokesman said the increase would cost the government about £200,000.

Image caption Neal Mellon of the Isle of Man Foodbank has called for the minimum wage to be brought in line with the living wage

The rate is based on the cost of living on the island, and the increase has been based on changes to the "basket" of goods used to calculate that.

The cost of living for single people is now calculated to include the cost of private rented accommodation, rather than one bedroom public sector housing.

Neal Mellon, of the Isle of Man Foodbank, said the introduction of the living wage was a "step in the right direction", but people had to be "realistic" about how much employers could afford to pay "immediately".

He added: "We'd like to see the government set a date for the living wage to become the minimum wage in the island, and let employers work towards that."

Employers in the island are legally obliged to pay workers aged 18 and over a minimum wage of £7.85 per hour.

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