848 employees are on minimum wage at Sheffield Hallam University, the third highest of any University in the UK (although, to be fair, probably because other uni’s outsource more)… and many of them cleaners. Here a cleaners view on freshers’ week – “It’s dirty. People leave their rubbish on the floor. You think they would appreciate you, but you get into the lift and they turn away from you.”
 
Since 1999 the minimum wage has increased by 75%, the price of bread has gone up by 147%, and the average FTSE CEO wage by 264%. This means the average rent & energy bill is now about the same as the minumum wage after tax, leaving a whole £100 a year for everything else. Lest we forget how that hurts generation after generation… “the study suggests that among the cleverest children born in England,  Scotland and Northern Ireland in 1970, in the top fifth of the ability range,  80% of the richest children achieved two A-levels or their equivalent, compared  with only 40% for the poorest. It meant that for poor children with high levels of intelligence, a majority  left school in the 1980s without two A-levels. ‘We see that in both the British and Swedish educational systems, even the  very brightest children are hampered if they come from a disadvantaged  background,'”
 
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Swiss Democracy
If you get 100,000 petition signatures in Switzerland, you don’t just get a debate in parliament, you can get a country-wide referendum on stuff like enforcing fair pay and introducing a basic income. A referendum on fair pay, limiting the top paid person in an organisation to no more than twelve times lowest paid possibly, is close…
 
A referendum on the Basic income will be put next year – though it has raised issues about both the benefits and risks of a basic income