LONDON — Jeremy Corbyn will today pledge to make companies bidding for government contracts to dramatically limit boardroom pay and “use powers taken back from Brussels” to “upgrade” workers’ rights.
Speaking at a train maintenance company in Doncaster this afternoon, Corbyn will propose that firms bidding for contracts will be required to:
• Move towards a ratio of 20-1 between the highest-paid and lowest-paid employee at a company, matching the public sector target;
• Pay their suppliers the full amount owed within 30 days;
• Give full trade union recognition to their workforce.
Assuming the lowest-paid employee earned £13,104 — the annual salary of a full-time worker doing 35 hours under the national living wage — a 20-1 pay ratio would mean that the highest-paid earner at the firm earned just over £260,000.
Research by the Equality Trust published in March found that the average CEO of a FTSE-listed firms earns 386 times more than workers on the national living wage, pocketing an average of £5.3 million a year.
Labour said in a statement that national and local government contracts awarded to private firms amounts to £200 billion, although it did not specify a time-frame for that figure. The party said it would use the spending to “upgrade our economy, create good local jobs, and reduce inequality.”
Today’s speech will be the fourth in a series of policy announcements Corbyn has delivered in the past two weeks.
On Tuesday, he promised greater protections for small businesses if he is elected prime minister.
Last week the Labour leader and shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner pledged to provide free school meals to all primary school pupils meals by adding VAT to private school fees.
Corbyn also pledged to raise the national minimum wage to £10 by 2020.
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