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Only one in six ever secure a better paid job

  • 23/10/2017

This article is over a year old

Is social mobility flatlining?

lady working at desk

Only one in six low-paid workers in the last 10 years managed to secure a full-time job with better pay, reveals the Social Mobility Commission.

The analysis shows that for most low paid workers, poorly paid positions are not acting as a first rung on the ladder, it is the only rung.

Of all those in low paid jobs in 2006, by 2016 just 17% had escaped into better paid jobs.

People stuck in the low-pay trap have seen their hourly wages rise by just 40p over the last decade after inflation is taken into account.

We are currently living in the longest pay squeeze in 150 years.

This low pay epidemic has been at the heart of the rise in in-work poverty. There are now 7.4 million individuals living in poverty despite being in working households.

High inflation is also a contributing factor to the low pay crises; while wage growth in regular pay is only at 2.1%, RPI inflation is running at a staggering 3.9%, effectively resulting in a pay cut.

This current economic stalemate has concluded in 50% of UK adults living in financial vulnerability. The FCA has stated that 25.6 million adults are in, or at risk of, poverty.

Alan Milburn, chair of the Social Mobility Commission, said: “Britain has an endemic low pay problem. While record numbers of people are in employment, too many jobs are low skilled and low paid.

“Millions of workers – particularly women – are being trapped in low pay with little chance of escape. The consequences for social mobility are dire.”

If you are in-work but low paid, find out what help is available.

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