Living in Grande Prairie has gotten more expensive for the majority of its residents. The living wage for a single adult has gone up the most, from $11.44 an hour to $13.01. That’s an increase of almost 14 per cent. In the report it’s noted that the shelter assumption for was changed from shared accommodation to living alone, meaning costs went up significantly.
Meanwhile, a family with two working parents and two children that don’t have employer health care benefits will need to earn $17.35 per hour to cover basic needs. In 2014 that amount was $16.16.
The only people seeing some relief this year are single parents with one kid. Their living wage dropped down 50 cents to $17.22 an hour, after seeing the biggest increase last year. The city is taking credit for part of that, thanks to an increase in the Low Income Recreation Access Program, and a new program that provides free transit access for low income earners.
A living wage takes into account what’s needed to maintain a decent standard living, with savings for future needs. It covers everything from food, shelter, clothing and a vehicle, along with social expenses like internet, recreation and vacation time.
The full report can be found online.