The Church of England was accused of double standards on Feb. 23 for offering jobs in cathedrals at lower wages than those it has called on other British employers to pay their workers.
Under the banner headline “Wages of Sin,” the Sun reported that it had found several advertisements for jobs in cathedrals that offered pay well below the “living wage” of 7.85 pounds ($12) an hour, endorsed by the Church and senior politicians.
Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said the Church recognized that no employer could ramp up wages overnight, and was working hard to get to a point where it was paying all of its workers the living wage.
“It’s embarrassing. We’d prefer to be there. We’re getting there as quickly as we can,” Welby, the spiritual head of the 80-million strong Anglican communion, told the BBC.
“It’s not the only area where we fall short of our own standards. We work on it as hard as we can,” he said.
Walmart has launched a charm offensive as part of its new urban strategy to impose smaller versions of its big box in inner cities across the country. It has proposed four stores for Washington, D.C. -- all in predominantly minority, and most in low-income, neighborhoods.
The debate over building Walmart stores in D.C. is engaging intense public sentiment, and for good reason. While Walmart promises new jobs in a community, in reality it displaces other local businesses, leaving in question whether there is a net jobs gain; one study showed that for every retail job Walmart brought, communities lost 1.4 other jobs. In addition, Walmart passes on the cost of its low wages to taxpayers when associates and their families rely on publicly funded health care and other assistance programs.