Vancouver dumps ‘living wage’ policy, effectively cutting wage for lowest-paid staff
Nearly six years after Vancouver became the largest city in Canada to commit to a living wage, city councillors voted to end the initiative.
In a closed-door meeting in January, council approved the action and directed staff to implement what it calls a “fair wage,” by calculating the average of five years of living wages.
The city says in a statement that the living wage rate for 2023 would have gone up more than 17 per cent to just above $24 per hour, immediately influencing its pay structure.
A statement posted by the group Living Wage for Families calls Vancouver’s decision “incredibly disappointing.”
The group says calculating wages on a five-year rolling average means workers must pay for rent or food at today’s costs using a wage based on the average earned since 2018.
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