Lidl to offer 'living wage' pay hikes to 800 employees
LIDL says it is giving raises to around 800 of its 4,300 workers nationwide to meet the latest 'living wage' of €12.30 an hour.
The German retailer has been a vocal advocate for payment of the higher baseline wage, which is set by the Living Wage Technical Group.
That advisory body recently raised its recommended minimum living wage from €11.90 per hour to €12.30. Ireland's statutory minimum wage, by contrast, is €9.80.
Lidl said most of its workers were already paid more than €12.30 hourly, but the remainder would receive the increase in their upcoming pay. The discount grocer said the raise was necessary to meet increased costs from the "housing crisis and associated increases in rent levels".
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In a matching move, Lidl in Northern Ireland and Britain said its lowest-paid employees there would receive raises to at least £9.30 (€10.89) an hour, based on the recommendations of the UK Living Wage Foundation.
The UK minimum wage is £8.21 an hour for workers aged 25 or older.
Lidl Ireland human resources director Maeve McCleane said: "We are delighted to be the first major nationwide food retailer to commit to the latest living wage in Ireland."
The raise for low-paid workers, she said, would bring them "to a level that is more reflective of enjoying a better standard of living".
"At Lidl, we are in a fortunate position that the last few years have seen our business go from strength to strength. Our people are undoubtedly central to this success," she said. "By continually investing in our team, we continue to retain and attract the best employees and, in turn, continue to serve our 1.5 million-plus weekly customers the highest-quality products."
Lidl has 162 retail outlets, and three distribution centres in Charleville, Co Cork; Mullingar, Co Westmeath; and Newbridge, Co Kildare.