Media Release: Delivery of Living Wage is matter of political will, not law – say solicitors

ONE of Scotland’s leading employment and personal injury firms, and workers’ rights campaigners, Thompsons Solicitors, have said that the successful delivery of a Living Wage through public procurement policy depends on political will – not legality.

In evidence to The Scottish Parliament’s Local Government and Regeneration Committee’s Inquiry into the Living Wage in Scotland, partner at the firm and workers’ rights campaigner, Patrick McGuire argued that it would be legally possible to introduce a Living Wage through public procurement law using the Scottish Parliament’s powers.

Partner at Thompsons Solicitors and workers’ rights campaigner, Patrick McGuire, said:

“Successful delivery of a living wage in Scotland depends on political will not law. We strongly believe that there is sufficient legal scope to introduce a Living Wage through procurement legislation.

“The EU, which sets the parameters of procurement regulations, is itself promoting socially-responsible public procurement. I don’t think many people would dispute that the Living Wage is a socially-responsible measure.

“There is a real opportunity to ensure this is a performance clause in public procurement contracts. In our view, the law offers clear possibilities for the Scottish Government to deliver this if it so wishes.

“It’s important that the Scottish Government uses the full powers at its disposal to show the way on this matter.”


Notes to editors:

Patrick McGuire’s written submission to the Committee can be found here.

Thompsons Solicitors won the prestigious Law Firm of the Year award at the Scottish Legal Awards 2011 as well as Litigation Firm and Employment Firm of the Year Award at the Law Awards of Scotland 2011. They have won five prestigious industry accolades in the last three years.

Thompsons specialise in delivering legal services which provide the answers clients seek, ensuring those responsible are held accountable, and where appropriate lessons are learned to prevent recurrence.

Thompsons has an impressive record in mounting prosecutions where merited and representing clients in a wide range of public inquiries.

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Contact: Lawrence Cowan