A statement from the Ontario Living Wage Network and the Better Way Alliance

Certified Living Wage Employer Josie Rudderham, of Hamilton's Cake & Loaf,testifies at the government's hearings on Bill 148 in 2017

Josie Rudderham, certified living wage employer, testifies before a government panel on bill 148 in 2017.

Businesses shun move to roll back workers rights, opting for the high road

We are a network of business owners challenging the corporate lobby narrative saying decent work laws are bad for business.

We have found the opposite - when we take care of employees and provide decent jobs, our businesses are more successful.

By scrapping most of Bill 148 - a $15 minimum wage, a couple paid leave days, equal pay, fair scheduling - the Ford government has shown that it is fundamentally for the big business lobbies who have proven themselves to be anti-worker.

There is another side to the story...

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PenFinancial, the Latest Living Wage Credit Union

Well done Niagara Poverty Reduction network for bringing PenFinancial into the living wage movement. They are the latest Credit Union to certify, bringing the total to 5 across Ontario: DUCA Credit union, Kindred Credit Union, Libro Credit UnionMainstreet Credit Union. Together they they operate 51 branches across the southern part of the province. It's getting easier to do your banking with a responsible employer. 


Materials From Public Sector Forum Now Available

Thank you to everyone who spent the day with us in Burlington on February 23rd. There was a palpable energy to the panels, discussions and presentations. It reminded me of why I love working on events. 

If you weren't able to make it, don't worry. Posted on the event's page are downloadable audio recordings of every part of the day. You can also view/download the 3 slide decks that were shown in the public sector and campaign panels.

If you listen to just one audio clip, make it the final wrap-up session, hosted by Deirdre Pike. She facilitates a summary of the most valuable takeaways from each part of the day. And it's also crazy entertaining. 

Updated Calculation for Waterloo Region

Announcing the 2018 Living Wage Rate: $16.10 an hour

The living wage rate is the hourly wage a worker needs to earn to cover their basic expenses and participate in community life. The calculation includes actual costs in local communities. So the Waterloo Region living wage rate reflects the actual cost for things like rent, food, transportation, hydro, child care, etc. in Waterloo region. The calculation also takes into account taxes and government transfers.

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Niagara This Week: Let's talk about Living Wage

To kick off #LivingWageWeek, Glen Walker, chair Niagara Poverty Reduction Network has a great op-ed in Niagara This Week:

Nov. 5-11 is Living Wage Week.Initiatives around the world in countries like New Zealand, the United Kingdom and even right here in Ontario are discussing Living Wage and its significance in our society.As part of its ongoing work, the Niagara Poverty Reduction Network’s (NPRN) Wages and Work Task Group has been involved in the calculation of the local living wage, as well as prompting discussions about this important benchmark and what it means to our community.There is much confusion regarding the differences between living wage and the legislated minimum wage.Minimum wage is a standard set by the provincial government that employers must legally adhere to. It is based on a historic standard that gets adjusted based on the policies of the current Ontario government. It is an arbitrary and, some might say, inadequate number...

Read the full piece here.

Kingston Recognizes First Two Living Wage Employers

Well done Cam Jay and Tara Kainer of Kingston Living Wage on a successful employer recognition event Thursday August 3rd.

The first two of many to come: Brunet Plumbing Kitchen & Bath and King's Town Dental

Living wage employers are leaders among their peers, and deserve to be recognized for their commitment to decent work. For that reason it was great to see this event receive so much coverage from the local media... 

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The 2017 Living Wage Calculation for Niagara Region

Despite an increase in cost of living expenses, the 2017 living wage for the Niagara Region has risen only modestly from last year’s calculation of $17.47, thanks in part to the recently introduced federal Canada Child Benefit (CCB).

“Providing wages that allow a family to meet its basic household needs is one important tool to address cost of living challenges in Niagara region and should be top of mind of all employers,” says Walker. “However, the reality is that many Niagara region businesses are struggling themselves to stay afloat, so other solutions must also be considered to help make life more affordable, such as improved public transit and access to more affordable child care.”


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Kindred Credit Union, More Than Just a Living Wage Employer...


I am pleased to announce the continued support of the Kindred Credit Union to the Ontario Living Wage Network. Not only is this financial institution a living wage employer, they are now leading the way by funding our first ever Employer Program Manager in order to extend the reach of this important initiative

Since we first started the Ontario Living Wage Network in 2014, our core mission has been to help businesses and organizations become certified living wage employers. Every business and organization is different and the process can take several months, but it is always gratifying to present the plaque and decals to the proud and latest certified living wage employers. 

Until now it has been a side-of-the-desk type job. The dedicated people across the province who make up the OLWN all have positions and responsibilities at other organizations. We take time from those commitments to travel to communities, organize launches and do the work of the OLWN.

Happily, processing the influx of requests and inquiries from prospective living wage employers is so great the need for an Employer Program Manager has become clear. Anne Coleman, who has experience with the Waterloo Region LW program, will be dedicating one full day a week making sure all employers are engaged and the communities have the support they need. 

The introduction of an Employer Program Manager is a significant step and extending the work and influence of OLWN wouldn’t be possible without Kindred Credit Union and their commitment to the values of decent work and community building. 

Thank you.