In 2020 organizers with the Ontario living Wage Network (OLWN) created a federally incorporated non-profit called Living Wage Canada/Salaire Vital Canada. The OLWN had happily outgrown our host organization—the magnanimous Mennonite Central Committee Ontario—and it was time to launch a formal organization.
We are still focused on Ontario operations, and will continue to conduct business as the OLWN in this province. But Living Wage Canada is also answering the call to provide organizational home to living wage leaders from across the country. There are currently 4 members of board, all from Ontario. We are looking to eventually add 5 more members. In addition to geographical representation we also look for diversity in identities protected by the Human Rights code, breadth of expertise/experience and, specialized skills and knowledge.
For more details about this volunteer position, please head over to the Living Wage Canada board search page:
Over five years ago Libro Credit Union, the largest credit union in Southwestern Ontario, became a certified Living Wage employer. It wasn't a surprise. They had been active at many roundtables and community groups concerned with—among other things—tackling the problem of working poverty. Like many organizations that make up the Ontario Living Wage Network (OLWN), Libro saw it necessary to lead by example and make public their certification.
Credit unions have always been early and potent champions of the living wage movement. We list 8 at the moment, with dozens of branches all over Ontario. In addition to being certified, we are pleased to announce that Libro Credit Union will be supporting the work of the Ontario Living Wage Network directly over the next three years with a generous annual financial contribution.Read more
It has been a frequent request: "What is the living wage for Mississauga/Brampton?" Today, with the help of the Region of Peel and the Peel Poverty Reduction Committee we can now say that rate has been calculated at $19.80 per hour.
The Ontario Living Wage Network paused all calculation work in 2020, due to barriers to year-to-year consistency issues caused by the pandemic. We are excited to not only get back to this work in 2021, but to also add such a large and heavily populated area to our map of coverage.
Local calculations are the starting blocks of the living wage movement; the real race is to certify as many living wage employers as possible. The problem of working poverty is understood well by our first certified living wage employer in Peel: The Mississauga Food Bank.Read more
It's Living Wage Week, and we're very excited to announce 23 updated living wage rates across the province as well as a first-time calculation for Peel Region.
Since we last made calculations in 2019, new policies that provide support to families with children have been introduced by the provincial government. Combined with changing family demographics, it has become clear that expenses for a reference family of four is no longer the most representative for living wage calculations in Ontario.
New supports for families with children meant that living wage calculations were coming back with reductions over the 2019 rates. Yet we all know the cost of living has not gone down. Inflation has quadrupled since the beginning of 2019 and is at a 18-year high. Our calculation was no longer reflecting reality.
Our 2021 calculations now take into account a weighted average between a family of four, single parent with one child and a single adult. These 2021 living wage rates reflect changing demographics in our province and increases in inflation. We believe they accurately reflect the realities of costs in Ontario.Read more
HAMILTON—The Ontario Living Wage Network (OLWN) is pleased to announce that FirstOntario Credit Union has become a the latest credit union to become a certified living wage employer, with all employees earning at least $16.45 per hour. In operation for over 80 years, FirstOntario serves more than 126,000 people with 31 branches throughout the Golden Horseshoe, Niagara Region and Southwestern regions of Ontario.Read more
Award-winning TLC Landscaping is one of several London businesses to become a certified living wage employer recently. Over 100 people work for TLC, and none earn less than the calculated living wage rate for London of $16.20 per hour.
As we do of all our new living wage employers, we asked Carla Bailey, Human Resources Manager why TLC chose to certify:
"As a company, we believe the more appreciation and consideration employees feel, the more enjoyable their work becomes, and the more energy they put into their work.Read more
KITCHENER—The Ontario Living Wage Network (OLWN) is pleased to announce that AET Group has become a certified living wage employer with all employees earning at least $16.35 per hour.
AET Group was founded twenty years ago as solid waste management company. They have since grown into multi-disciplinary environmental consulting, auditing and scientific services company. Scott Freiburger, Managing Director & CEO, explains why they became a certified living wage employer:Read more
The Trillium Network for Advanced Manufacturing is a non-profit organization dedicated to raising public and investor awareness of Ontario's advanced manufacturing ecosystem, with the intention of supporting growth and improving competitiveness. Brendan Sweeney, Managing Director, explains why they decided to certify:
"The Trillium Network for Advanced Manufacturing believes that paying the living wage, or more, demonstrates that we value our employees health and well-being. A living wage demonstrates that we believe in the growth of our staff, community and economy."Read more
The Ontario Living Wage Network (OLWN) is pleased to announce that Village Media has become a certified living wage employer with employees at all outlets in Ontario earning at least the local living wage where available. They are the first media outlet to become a living wage employer in Ontario, and the first certified employer in Sault Ste. Marie where they are headquartered.
Village Media is a network of local news and information websites that began providing digital news and community content to the Sault Ste. Marie region almost 20 years ago. They have now grown to include 20 owned and operated sites and license their custom content management system to respected news publishers across Canada, in the United States and in the United Kingdom. CEO Jeff Elgie explains why they chose to certify:Read more