The paid internship with Brighton & Hove Music & Arts gave me the chance to really focus and develop my skills and experiences as a music leader.
Faye Polden, Music Leader Intern at Brighton & Hove Music & Arts - part of Brighton Dome
Inclusion is at the heart of Youth Music’s work, breaking down barriers for young people who might otherwise be excluded due to their background or circumstances. Living Wage opportunities are essential to ensuring inclusion particularly in the arts and culture sector, which has a history of unpaid internships that prevent many young people from participating.
As an accredited Living Wage Funder, Youth Music support successful funding applicants to pay the real Living Wage rates to any grant-funded staff posts. Most recently, part of the budget criteria for Incubator Fund applicants was a requirement that 50% of the money go direct to 18-25s, with payment at the Real Living Wage or higher. We also regularly encourage grantholders to become Living Wage Employers.
We caught up with Emma Collins, Deputy Director at one of our grantholders, the Brighton Dome, to find out why the Living Wage matters to them.
What motivated you to become a Living Wage Employer?
Brighton Dome support the Living Wage Campaign as we want to pay our lowest paid staff fairly for the work that they do and appreciate that our city (outside of London) is one of the most expensive places to live and work.
Why is it important that organisations become Living Wage Employers?
The scheme definitely improves recruitment and helps to demonstrate our commitment to ensuring that our staff do feel supported and valued when working for us.
What have you done since becoming a Living Wage Employer? What changes have you made?
Since joining the Living Wage campaign we have promoted this at careers fairs and added our name to the website as one of over 600 employers within Brighton & Hove who have signed up to the living wage. Through our partnership with Youth Music we have also created a new Music Leader Intern paid role, which is helping to broaden access to professional music leadership opportunities.
What is the Living Wage?
The Living Wage is a voluntary rate, calculated independently and based on the real cost of living in the UK and London.
Long committed to fair pay, Youth Music became the first Living Wage Funder in the arts and culture sector in 2017. Thanks to funding from the National Lottery via Arts Council England, Youth Music supports more than 350 music-making projects each year and encourages these to pay the Living Wage as well to become accredited Living Wage Employers.
Youth Music was recognised as a Funding Champion at the 2019 Living Wage Champion Awards.
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