What is a “Living Wage”?
A Living wage, according to the Global Living Wage Coalition, is “the remuneration received for a standard workweek by a worker in a particular place sufficient to afford a decent standard of living for the worker and her or his family. Elements of a decent standard of living include food, water, housing, education, health care, transportation, clothing, and other essential needs including provision for unexpected events”.
But unlike minimum wage, living wages are not set or enforced by governments and often involve complex calculations that need to take into account bonuses and in-kind benefits, such as housing, healthcare, schooling and subsidised food that might be provided to an employee on top of their basic wage. Living wages are also region-specific (not country-specific) since cost of living may vary between urban and rural areas and different parts of the same country.