Explaining the Living Wage Calculation

Hamilton’s living wage rate in 2014 is $14.95.

What was included in the the living wage calculation?

  • Food
  • Shelter
  • Clothing
  • Transportation
  • Child care
  • Private health insurance for extended health benefits such as prescription drugs and dental care
  • Continuing education for adults to upgrade skills
  • Items that contribute allow for fuller participation in society (also known as “social inclusion”), such as:
    • City of Hamilton recreation pass and swimming lessons for children
    • Monthly family outing to local tourist attraction
    • Family vacation in Ontario
    • Gifts for family birthdays
    • School-related costs such as field trips and pizza days
  • Other items such as: bank fees and tenants’ insurance

What was not included in the the living wage calculation?

  • Debt, including student loan repayments
  • Retirement or education savings
  • Home ownership
  • Care for the disabled or seriously ill

Can I read more about how Hamilton’s living wage was calculated?

Yes, the Social Planning and Research Council’s companion report to Working and Still Poor, It Doesn’t Add Up answers many questions about the calculation.