Issue date
• New Wales TUC analysis shows workers in Cardiff are set to be nearly £1,100 a year worse off in 2022 – after inflation – than last year
• Years of weak wage growth have left families “badly exposed” to cost-of-living crisis, says Wales TUC
• Analysis published as Unison Cymru/Wales and the Wales TUC bring workers together for a rally in Cardiff on Thursday 6 Oct ahead of a UK parliamentary lobby on 2 November

Pay packets in Cardiff are set to be worth almost £1,100 a year less this year – in real terms, that is once inflation has been taken into consideration – than in 2021, according to new Wales TUC analysis. 

The analysis of official data shows that average real wages will fall by around £1,088 compared to last year.  

The stark findings are published as Unison Cymru/Wales and the Wales TUC brings together union leaders and workers in Cardiff on Thursday 6 October ahead of the union body’s National Day of Action to demand better for working people – and a UK parliamentary lobby on 2 November

The analysis shows the median salary in Cardiff in 2021 was £24,687. Wales TUC analysis, based on Office for Budget Responsibility forecasts, shows the value of wages in Cardiff will fall by around £1,088 as soaring inflation outstrips the increase in wages.  

The Wales TUC says years of stagnating pay have left workers “badly exposed” to Britain’s cost of living crisis. 

The union body says the UK Government must take urgent action to raise wages and protect families from spiralling household costs.  

Urgent action 

The TUC says ministers must do far more to give families long-term financial security.  

The Wales TUC says governments in Westminster and Cardiff must: 

Raise wages and improve workers’ rights by: 

  • Introducing a £15 minimum wage as soon as possible 
  • Providing funding for a fair pay rise for all public sector workers.
  • Banning zero-hours contracts and fire and rehire 
  • Bringing forward inflation-proof raises to universal credit and pensions to October 
  • Introducing new bargaining rights for whole industries and protecting the right to strike 
  • Raising women’s incomes and stopping workplace racism 

Reduce household costs by: 

  • Cutting energy bills, nationalising energy retail and setting up a new public energy champion 
  • Rolling out a rapid programme of home insulation 

Wales TUC General Secretary Shavanah Taj said:  

“Families are under intolerable financial pressure with costs spiralling out of control. 

“Workers in Wales are facing the biggest fall in living standards in generations. 

“We have workers in the public sector in Wales who are pawning possessions, taking second jobs and turning to gambling to make ends meet. 

"Workers deserve better. Governments in Cardiff and London must do more to help working people have a decent standard of living – starting with getting wages rising. 

“Now is the time for workers to come together and demand better.” 

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady added:  

“Nobody who works for a living should be losing sleep over how they will pay their bills this winter. 

“But soaring costs mean pay packets in Cardiff have taken a rapid fall – in real terms – in just 12 months.  

“Everything is going up but wages. Years of pay stagnation have left workers badly exposed to Britain’s cost of living crisis.  

“The prime minister and chancellor may have u-turned on their decision to hand out tax cuts to millionaires, but they're still letting bankers' bonuses rip and cutting taxes for big business, while ignoring the crisis facing families. 

“Things can’t go on like this. The UK government must do far more to get pay rising, and to protect workers from skyrocketing bills. 

“We’re coming together in an autumn of action to demand better for all workers.”  

Join our Wales Demands Better campaign