What is a living wage?


Families who work for low wages face impossible choices — buy food or heat the house, feed the children or pay the rent. The result can be spiraling debt, constant anxiety and long-term health problems. In many cases, it means that the adults in the family are working long hours, often at two or three jobs, just to pay for basic necessities. They have little time to spend with their family, much less to help their children with school work or participate in community activities.

Did you know:

  • 1 in 5 children in B.C. experience poverty?
  • The majority of poor children in B.C. have parents who work full or part-time? Low-wage and precarious work are key contributors of family poverty.
  • Approximately 30 per cent of Metro Vancouver two-parent families with two children have incomes below the 2019 living wage?
  • Of the 27 factors identified as having an impact on child development, up to 80 per cent were seen to improve as family income increases?
  • As family income increases, we see an improvement of up to 80 per cent on the 27 factors identified as having an impact on child development?

Paying families a living wage, so that they can pay for their basic living expenses, is the most just and effective way of addressing child poverty in B.C.