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Andover-based security specialist, Venture Security, has been accredited as a living wage employer by the Living Wage Foundation.
The organisation has committed to paying all its permanent employees at least a minimum hourly wage of £8.75 in the UK and £10.20 in London - both rates being significantly higher than the statutory minimum for over 25s.
The living wage is an independently set hourly rate of pay that is calculated according to the real cost of living. The rate, which is paid on a voluntary basis by employers, is updated annually and is distinct from the statutory national living wage for over 25s, currently set at £7.50 an hour.
Venture Security currently employs six staff at its head office on Dene Road, with a further 130 security operatives and seasonal events staff employed at any one time. The company is ranked within the top 2% of security providers in the country by the Security Industry Authority (SIA) and lists key holding and alarm response, mobile patrols and security guarding, as well as event and venue security among its many services.
Managing director Paul Howe, who founded Venture in 2006, commented: “The security industry unfortunately has a reputation for paying poorly, but as a company we’ve always believed in paying fairly and above the statutory minimum.
“The cost of living is going up and we can’t expect people to survive on the minimum wage. The Living Wage Foundation recognises the discrepancy and we’re proud to be among the first security companies in the region to commit to paying their recommended hourly rates.”
There are currently only five security providers in the south east of England who have committed to the living wage. In Andover, other accredited employers include CloudPay, Santander, Nationwide, Oxfam Charity Shop and Anton Vets.
Katherine Chapman, director, Living Wage Foundation, said: “We are delighted to welcome Venture Security to the Living Wage movement as an accredited employer.
“The company joins over 37,000 UK employers who together want to go further than the government minimum, to ensure all staff earn enough to live on. These range from small businesses, to household names, including; IKEA, Aviva, Chelsea and Everton Football Club and many more.
“All these businesses recognise that the Living Wage accreditation is the mark of a responsible employer and believe that a hard day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay."