Mansfield College will be paying the living wage for all staff as of next month.
A campaign by students, staff and the Living Wage Campaign means that all staff will be earning at least £7.65/hour.
The college, which has the University’s third smallest endowment, hopes that their decision will prompt colleges with larger budgets to follow suit if they haven’t already.
The College’s Bursar, Allan Dodd, said the size and endowment of the College means the new plan will stretch budgets further. He commented that they had to: “find other ways to tighten our belts to fulfil this commitment”.
“However, we feel it is an ethical issue. It is all about giving the issue priority and we chose collectively to do so.”
Rachel Cain, a former Environment, Ethics and Charities Rep, said: “This decision was made because of the students. It is a result of commitment – putting pressure on the higher powers in College through carrying out research and conducting a well-thought-out, evidence-based campaign”.
Charley Roe, a student who campaigned for the change, said: “The evidence provided by communication with the scouts and an anonymous survey was decisive in the demand it showed for the living wage to be implemented at Mansfield.”
The living wage is the minimum level of pay that enables a full-time worker to provide for themselves and for their family. In Oxford, it is calculated to be on average £7.45 per hour, as opposed to the national minimum of £6.19.
Several colleges have already agreed to move their pay scales to the living wage standard, and the University agreed to do so for all its staff in April of last year. Several candidates in last year’s OUSU elections also pledged to support the campaign.
Andrew Grey, Chair of the Living Wage Campaign, said he was “delighted” at Mansfield’s decision.
“It will make a difference to the staff of the College, and sends a clear message that the College believes its staff should be paid enough to live on. The authorities of colleges where the living wage is not paid to all staff should consider”.
Within Oxford, the campaign works alongside OUSU to implement the Living Wage in colleges. Daniel Tomlinson, OUSU Vice-President for Charities and Community, said: “I’m pleased that the hard work of the students campaigning in Mansfield and as part of OUSU’s Living Wage Campaign is producing more good news.”