A network of municipalities and community organizations are shedding light on the affordability and livability of Albertan communities.
Marking a year since its launch, the Alberta Living Wage Network (ALWN or “the Network”) has released updated living wage numbers for 2022.
The 2022 living wages are as follows:
- Calgary: $22.40
- Canmore: $32.75
- Cochrane: $22.35
- Drayton Valley: $19.65
- Drumheller: $21.20
- Edmonton: $21.40
- Fort McMurray: $22.50
- Grand Prairie: $19.65
- Lethbridge: $20.30
- Medicine Hat: $17.50
- Red Deer: $19.65
- Rocky Mountain House: $21.85
- Spruce Grove: $20.70
- St. Albert: $22.40
- Stony Plain: $20.40
With record high inflation in a post-pandemic world, the intention of releasing the living wage numbers is not to add further stress to business, but rather to shed light on the reality of the cost of living in cities and towns across Alberta.
The living wage is defined as the hourly wage a worker needs to earn to cover their basic expenses and participate in the community. Over the last year, the Network has adjusted its calculations to better reflect the lived reality of Albertans. The 2022 are based on the income needs of three household types: 1) a two-parent family with 2 young children, 2) a lone-parent family with one child and 3) a single individual living alone. The calculation considers the hourly rate of pay needed for a household to maintain a modest standard of living, once government transfers have been added and taxes have been subtracted. It assumes that each adult is working full-time hours and includes more than the basics of food, clothing and shelter – it also takes into account unexpected costs, small investments in education, child care, and participating in the community.
“Living wages are an important tool in figuring out what it costs to live in a city and with the current affordability crisis, it’s clear that more needs to be done to help people make ends meet. Alberta is the only province that didn’t review and raise its minimum wage in 2022 and one of the only provinces that doesn’t tie its minimum wage to the cost of living. It’s time for the government to step up and give Albertans the help they need.”
– Meaghon Reid, Executive Director, Vibrant Communities Calgary
“The collective effort of Network council members, staff, certified employers and the financial support of The Calgary Foundation and The Greater Edmonton Foundation has resulted in a very successful first year of the Network. This progress would not be possible without the engagement of the 16 community members of the Network and the 75 living wage employers certified this year.”
– Franco Savoia, Chair, Alberta Living Wage Network
“The certification aligns with our commitment as a B Corp, and also a standard we’ve been meeting internally for many years. Our people are at the heart of our company, and this will further help us attract and retain the best talent in the construction industry.”
– Tim Coldwell, President, Chandos Construction
“The Living Wage provides context to the affordability concerns that are the lived reality of so many people in Alberta. It is a tool and calculation that helps us to understand what expenses impact the cost of living within our communities, as well as helping us to identify what programs increase affordability for our residents. The Town of Canmore is a founding member of the Living Wage Network and continues to support the network by working to understand Alberta’s diverse economic landscape.”
– Lisa Brown, Manager of Community Social Development, Town of Canmore
About the Alberta Living Wage Network
The Alberta Living Wage Network is a network of community organizations and municipalities with the goal of advancing a coordinated living wage movement in Alberta. The network assists communities in their annual living wage calculation and provides certification to qualifying living wage employers. For more information visit https://livingwagealberta.ca/ and follow @livingwageab on Twitter or Instagram.
- The Alberta Living Wage Network publishes common questions and answers about living wages.
- Alberta Living Wage Methodology explains how living wages are calculated in the province.
- Certified employers have been featured on the Alberta Living Wage Network blog – TELUS Calgary Convention Centre, Lethbridge and Alberta Capital Region United Ways, Knifewear, Delnor Construction and Naiad Irrigation.
For more information