2019’s Living Wages Rates for B.C. have been released and, though the living wage dropped from the 2018’s $19.37 to this years $18.90, Revelstoke moved up the rankings from fourth to third, falling only behind metro Vancouver and Victoria.
The Living Wage for Families notes that ‘the living wage is the hourly amount that each of two working parents with two young children must earn to meet their basic expenses (including rent, child care, food and transportation) once government taxes, credits, deductions and subsidies are taken into account.’
It is important to note that the required minimum is a modest estimate, a bare bones amount needed to care for a family and not taking into account savings of any kind, including for emergencies, education or retirement.
Like Revelstoke, communities across the province saw a decrease in the amount needed for a living wage. This is, according to a new report released today from the Living Wage for Families Campaign, thanks to the income-tested Affordable Child Care Benefit and the universal Child Care Fee Reduction Initiative. This means that, despite increases in the cost of rent and other basic necessities, the living wage is lower in 2019 thanks to the provincial government’s new child care policies.’
Without BC’s new child care investments, the living wage amounts would have increased considerably.
The living wage cost is calculated annually in Working for a Living Wage: Making Paid Work Meet Basic Family Needs in Metro Vancouver,a report published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives BC office, First Call: BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition and the Living Wage for Families Campaign.
Working poverty is a Canada-wide issue. Over 50 communities across the country, including the 18 in BC, have living wage campaigns and are advocating to improve quality of life for low-wage workers.
The full report is available here.