It may not come as much of a surprise to some, but minimum wage in Ontario is not enough to live on in virtually any city in the province.
According to OLWN, a living wage is: “The hourly wage a worker needs to earn to cover their basic expenses and participate in their community.”
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Not surprisingly, Toronto has the highest living wage at $22.08, or $7.73 more than the current minimum wage. That additional $7.73 per hour in a 40 hour week would work out to add $16,078 to their annual income.
Finally…it’s #LivingWageWeek and after a pause in 2020, we have 22 updated #LivingWage rates, and a new calculation for Peel Region. For more details about how we calculated this year’s rates:https://t.co/7tFHi0qVRw pic.twitter.com/MyoCAraKGS
— Living Wage Ontario (@OnLivingwage) November 1, 2021
OLWN emphasizes that a living wage does not cover debt repayment, savings, homeownership, savings for education, or any other savings outside of a small safety net.
Living wage does include food, clothing, shelter, childcare, transportation, medical expenses, recreation and a modest vacation.
They calculate living wages “based on the needs of a family of four with two parents each working full-time, full-year,” according to the OLWN website.
Sault Ste. Marie has the lowest reported living wage at $16.20, or $1.90 above the current minimum wage. Even that additional $1.90 per hour would work out to more than $3,900 annually at 40 hours per week — a life-changing difference for many minimum wage earners.