Share Action

Fair Treatment of Workers

Creating a fair and healthy society hinges on addressing income inequality, insecure jobs and in-work poverty. We’re working with investors to demand that companies change their employment practices to ensure everyone has access to decent work.

Putting people over profit

Precarious work is on the rise, millions work for less than they can live on, and there is a long way to go to close the gender and ethnicity pay gaps. Demand for profit has driven this inequality and investors have a role in providing the solution.

Income inequality and in-work poverty pose significant risks to our society and economy. Not only are economic opportunities being unfairly distributed, millions of workers are being left without the dignity or respect they deserve.

We want to see salaries which cover the basic needs of individuals and their families :families: a real Living Wage. What’s more, all workers should be offered basic rights and benefits: secure contracts, a guaranteed number of hours, union representation, pensions, holiday and sick pay.

These issues also disproportionally impact individuals from ethnic minority backgrounds, with forty-seven per cent of Black and ethnic minority young adults on zero-hour contracts in the UK.

It's more vital than ever that companies provide the best environments for their workforce to thrive – there is growing evidence that those that look after their employees outperform those that don’t.

Investors and companies relying on low-paid and insecure work are at increased risk of reputational damage, industrial action, high staff turnover, poor productivity, and new regulation demanding further disclosure.

Role of the financial system

Eighty per cent of Living Wage Employers believe that the real Living Wage has enhanced the quality of work of staff, while twenty-five per cent saw a reduction in staff turnover.

In the UK, twenty per cent of part-time workers, and ten per cent of full-time workers, were living in poverty in 2022.

More people in insecure jobs report health problems than those in secure roles. For those aged 20-24, 32% more people report chronic, work-limiting health issues in insecure roles, than people in secure employment. Good quality, secure work coincides with increased productivity, and reduced absenteeism and sick leave.

Addressing race inequalities in the labour market could boost the UK economy by £24 billion a year.

Bringing investors together to demand change

Our Good Work Investor Coalition uses collective action to drive up employment standards, and helps investors to:


By joining the Coalition, investors collectively engage companies to promote good work standards, such as the Living Wage, secure work and strong diversity and improve workplace standards


Through ShareAction-led detailed research, topical briefings and webinars, investors can increase their knowledge and understanding of workforce issues, and how they can take further action to address such issues.

Demonstrate real world impact on workforce issues:

Through collaborative company engagement meetings, letters, and attending annual general meetings, investors can engage with companies to ensure they are working to improve the lives of workers, no matter their contractual status.

Good Work themes

Living Wage

Everyone deserves a fair wage for a fair day’s work. This means a wage that meets their basic needs – and those of their families. Yet, today, many workers in the UK, and globally, work for less than this. We bring together a coalition of investors to urge companies to commit to paying a real Living Wage. Since 2013, our Coalition has engaged with FTSE350 companies on this topic oand this year, the Coalition will focus on those in the retail sector. These workers were deemed heroes during the COVID-19 pandemic but are now strongly feeling the impacts of the recent increase in cost of living and inflationary pressures, whilst their wages have remained stagnant.

Insecure Work

The shape of work is changing. We’re seeing an increase in insecure contracts – including casual, temporary agency and labour hire, such as gig workers and zero-hour contracts – and ta decrease in basic rights and protection. We want to change this trend and we’re engage with investors to encourage companies to improve their workforce practices.

Racial Inequity

Businesses do not operate in a vacuum – structural inequalities and systematic biases in society are reproduced within the workplace. If companies do not take active steps to improve diversity and inclusion, these inequalities will only increase. Our Coalition engages with FTSE350 companies in the financial services, hospitality, catering, food processing and manufacturing sectors to disclose their Ethnicity Pay Gaps. But it doesn’t stop at disclosure, the Coalition wants to see companies publish an analysis and action plans to address such gaps. We want to see Ethnicity Pay Gap reporting become manadatory for large companies, and we’re engaging with policymakers to set the case for action.

Good Work Coalition

It is more vital than ever that we invest in workforces - and there's growing evidence that companies that look after their employees will outperform those that don't. Investors will be key to this, and our investor coalition aims to engage companies to push for better working practices.

Current Members of the Good Work Coalition

  • Aviva Investors
  • Barrow Cadbury Trust
  • Boston Common Asset Management
  • Brunel Pension Partnership
  • CCLA Investment Management
  • Cardano Group
  • Castlefield Investment Partners
  • Central Finance Board of the Methodist Church
  • Church of England Pensions Board
  • Columbia Threadneedle Investments
  • EOS at Federated Hermes
  • EdenTree Investment Management
  • Esmée Fairbairn Foundation
  • Friends Provident Foundation
  • Global Systematic Investors
  • Greenbank Investments
  • Guy’s and St. Thomas’ Foundation
  • HSBC Asset Management
  • Impax Asset Management
  • Jesuits in Britain
  • Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust
  • Joseph Rowntree Foundation
  • Jupiter Asset Management
  • Lankelly Chase Foundation
  • Legal & General Investment Management
  • London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham Pension Fund
  • London Borough of Islington Pension Fund
  • London CIV
  • NEST
  • Newton Investment Management
  • Norfolk Pension Fund
  • NOW Pensions
  • Paul Hamlyn Foundation
  • PensionBee
  • PIRC
  • Scottish Widows
  • Strathclyde Pension Fund
  • The Health Foundation
  • TPT Retirement Solutions
  • Tudor Trust
  • UNISON Pension Fund


Explore All

Latest News

Get Involved

Join the movement
Find out more
Join our investor initiatives
Find out more