A SCOTTISH charity with branches in Galashiels and Melrose has celebrated becoming a Living Wage employer.

To mark the occasion, the Scottish Government’s Minister for Public Health and Sport, Aileen Campbell, visited Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland (CHSS) headquarters in Edinburgh on Thursday, November 9.

During her visit, Ms Campbell met CHSS staff, who shared their plans to proudly display their Living Wage employer mark in each of their community hubs and retail units across Scotland, including their branches in the Borders.

Jay Hogarty, Director of Retail at CHSS, said: “We recognise the importance and necessity of paying our retail staff in our stores in Galashiels and Melrose the living wage and supporting them to meet the increasing cost of living.”

The Living Wage, which has increased to £8.75 from £8.45 per hour, will be extended to all 260 employees of CHSS by May 2018.

The Living Wage seeks to meet the cost of living in Scotland, including the cost of accommodation, food and accounting for factors such as inflation.

Minister for Public Health and Sport, Aileen Campbell said: “This is great news and will ensure staff directly employed by CHSS – alongside all contracted staff – have the security of being paid at least the real Living Wage.”