labor unions have accused the government of turning a blind eye to the "standard of living crisis" of Britain, with earnings the past decade stagnates despite an increase in the number of people on the labor market, according to new figures from the Resolution Foundation.
The think tank found that people in the poorest third of households in the United Kingdom account for more than half of the increase in employment since the beginning of the financial crisis.
Of a 2.1 million increase in employment between 2008-2009 and 2016-2017, 1.2 million came from the bottom third of households in terms of income, with 360,000 added in the middle third and 540,000 in the top.
However, the foundation said that although higher employment had given a boost to living standards, this was compensated for by widespread uncertainty & # 39; with 800,000 employees who still had no zero-hour contracts. The think tank said there was also a "dire performance in terms of pay," with real average earnings still £ 13 per week lower than a decade ago.
These findings correspond to official figures that were published earlier this month and that demonstrate this wage growth fell unexpectedly in June, despite a lower unemployment rate, and a day after the government reported its largest fiscal surplus in 18 years.
In July, the Resolution Foundation said the incomes of the poorest households in the UK had dropped last year due to cuts and get up inflation, leading to the biggest increase in poverty since Margaret Thatcher was in power.
"Low-income families have taken the majority of job growth in Britain, demonstrating that the drive for full employment can raise living standards," said Stephen Clarke, senior economic analyst at the Resolution Foundation.
"But while employment is at a record high, Britain is still far from full employment and too much work remains low paid and uncertain, as less than half of people with disabilities or ill health are currently work, targeted support for these groups is the key to achieving further employment progress. "
Clarke adds: "Steps to be aware of shift work in advance, and a right to a regular contract for people who work regular hours on a zero hour contract, would also help people in work with costly job security. "
The general secretary of the TUC, Frances O & # 39; Grady, said: "Wages take longer to recover from this crash than after the Great Depression." The government is turning to the British standard of living, and ministers must ensure that wages are paid faster. rise. "
The findings of the Resolution Foundation also showed that, in addition to households with lower incomes, employment growth was also good for other groups that have traditionally struggled to find work, such as ethnic minorities and people with disabilities.
Over the past 10 years, ethnic minority workers have represented 47 percent of the increase in employment and those with a low qualification level of 43 percent.
According to the think tank, however, many disadvantaged groups still face "employment gaps" and are advised to provide targeted support to help them find employment and help Britain to achieve full employment.
The foundation said that specific policies must be adopted to improve the employment outlook of people with disabilities or ill health, of whom only 45 percent worked in the work last year.