Living Wage in Canada - seeding a movement

Submitted by Liz Weaver on March 26, 2014 - 3:39am
First gathering nets results

Over the past seven years, Vibrant Communities Canada and Tamarack have hosted a Living Wage Community of Practice (COP).  This COP moved along without much momentum for a number of years - with members of the COP sharing resources about their living wage campaigns and learning togehter.  It was good, but not great.  

Two years ago, this changed.  The members identified the need to develop a Canadian Framework for a Living Wage which can be found at www.livingwagecanada.ca.  This was an interesting turning point.  There was renewed engagement, a sense of doing something together.  New communities became identified and jumped on board.  Over the course of six months or so, the Canadian Framework for a Living Wage was developed and momentum began to heat up.  

The COP calls generated more interest and new opportuntiies presented themselves.  A Canadian living wage website was developed.  Canadian communities joined the UK in celebrating living wage week in November 2013 and plans are underway for 2014.  

And, on March 25, 2014, a face to face gathering of more than 90 living wage leaders from across Canada took place in Toronto.  The seeds of a movement are being sown.  This group of leaders shared their ideas, listened to speakers and planned their next steps including employer certification and growing the network.  

Who knows, in 10 years time will we all look back and say, we remember when....