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Living Wage


  The 2017 Fraser

Valley Living Wage

is $15.90/hour

Read the full report here.

What is a Living Wage?

The Fraser Valley Living Wage is $15.90/hour

Living Wage is the basic hourly wage required for a family of four with both parents working full-time year-round to meet basic needs and maintain a decent standard of living. Based on the actual costs of living in a given community, Living Wage provides a basic level of economic security, but still represents a conservative, bare bones budget. The Fraser Valley’s Living Wage was calculated based on the premise of social and economic inclusion for all.

Living Wage allows Fraser Valley residents to:

  • Meet basic needs
  • Create safe home environments for themselves and their children
  • Maintain decent standards of living
  • Participate as equal members of society

How is the Living Wage Calculated?

Living Wage is calculated based on a bare bones budget for a healthy family of four with two children aged 4 and 7 and each parent working 35hrs/week and 52wks/year. At a Living Wage, this family can meet its basic expenses once government transfers have been added and government deductions and taxes have been subtracted. 


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*For details on the Living Wage Calculation see Living Wage Fraser Valley: 2017 Update

Benefits of a Living Wage


Fraser Valley Living Wage Employers


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United Way Fraser Valley

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Fraser Valley

Wages in the Fraser Valley

A Fraser Valley family where both parents work full-time full-year at Living Wage earns the amount required to meet their basic annual household expenses of $62,856 (accounting for government taxes and transfers). At B.C.'s minimum wage of $10.45, the same family earns only $38,038 which is less than two-thirds of the amount required to make ends meet.

  • 15% of Fraser Valley residents, including 11,175 children under 18 years, live in poverty (LIM-After Tax).
  • There are over 5,000 working poor individuals in Abbotsford.
  • One in three two-parent two-child families in the Fraser Valley earns less than the Living Wage threshold.
  • One in three poor children in BC (32%) has at least one parent employed full-time, full-year. 

Despite working full-time, a large number of Fraser Valley residents are currently earning much less than what is required to meet their basic needs and provide a decent standard of living for their families.

For more statistics, see the Abbotsford Poverty Fact Sheet 2015.

Notable trends for 2017

  • Living Wage for the Fraser Valley decreased in 2016 and 2017 due to federal government income transfers from the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) since July 2016.  Monthly expenses increased by $200; monthly income from CCB transfer increased by $300. 
  • Family expenses increased by 3.8% over a one year period. The general BC inflation rate of 2.0%.
  • Compared to 2013, Fraser Valley families must spend $523 more each month to make ends meet.
  • By dollar amount, the biggest drivers of the increase are shelter, childcare, and food, which rose by $217, $160, and $76 since 2013, respectively.
  • Employers in the Fraser Valley are increasingly using the Living Wage as a baseline to formalize pay scales and employee packages in order to remain competitive and reduce turnover.  When employees understand the true value of their employment package (wages plus benefits) it increases the likelihood of retention and productivity.  Employers are also now comparing the cost of providing a Living Wage (which can include benefits) with turnover and training.  

Living Wage Fraser Valley

Living Wage Fraser Valley (LWFV) is a voluntary multi-sectoral group that works to reduce poverty by raising community awareness, influencing local policy and recognizing local employers who pay their employees a living wage. We believe that people who work full time should not live in poverty and that working individuals should maintain a decent standard of living where they can participate fully in society. Living Wage Fraser Valley is hosted by Vibrant Abbotsford and partnered with Living Wage for Families via the Living Wage Employer Certification Program. 

Get Involved

Living Wage Employers
  • Join our email list and become a member of Living Wage Fraser Valley

  • Become a certified Living Wage employer

  • Discuss Living Wage with family, friends and community (raise awareness)

  • Support policies and tax/transfer systems that make cost of living more affordable