Poor pay for Olympic work sparks row

A row between the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and campaign groups about how much contractors are paid has raised questions about employment standards on the project.

Last week the London Citizens campaign group accused the ODA of reneging on an agreement signed in 2004 to pay Olympic workers a minimum London­-weighted living wage of £7.05 an hour.

But the ODA has denied ever signing a deal with the group. The authority said it could not force contractors to pay the enhanced hourly rate. The row is likely to anger London mayor Ken Livingstone, who personally championed the campaign for the living wage in 2004.

Neil Jameson, lead campaigner at London Citizens, told Personnel Today: “The ODA has, in effect, lied to us by saying that it now has no obligation to pay workers a decent wage.”

But David Higgins, chief executive of the ODA, rejected the claim and said the authority was committed to promoting the improved wage.

The ODA said it would “encourage” contractors to pay the living wage, but it was too early to say how that would work in practice.

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