The members of the Social Planning Society of Cranbrook are excited to announce the recent hiring of Delaney Kunitz as Social Researcher for the Living Wage Project. The Living Wage project will focuses on the calculation of $14.16/hour, which is higher than minimum wage, and the ways we can support the many working families in Cranbrook are living below or at that measure.
The Cranbrook Social Planning Society Families began the Living Wage project in Cranbrook in 2011 because “Families are working harder – often holding down more than one job – and yet they’re still struggling to make ends meet” according to Dana Osiowy, Board Chair. The Cranbrook Social Planning Society includes a number of key community service organizations like ANKORS, the United Way, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cranbrook, East Kootenay Child Care Resource and Referral Program and community members at large. The goal of the Social Planning Society is to improve the living circumstances of individuals and community through social planning activities, coordinated research, collaborative engagement, and strategic action.
Working with the community, Kunitz will be collecting stories and experiences of people struggling to survive at or below the wage of $14.16 per hour. A community’s living wage was calculated by Caitlin Etherington from Interior Health as the Regional Population Health Facilitator. The calculation was made in conjunction with the University of Victoria and by looking at local expenses, including rent and childcare, plus government transfers minus deductions. It is very important to remember that the Living Wage is not minimum wage - it is the minimum a person needs to make to be able to afford basic necessities.
“No should have to decide between paying the mortgage and buying groceries,” Kunitz says. “My goal in working with this project is to gather real life stories and struggles to share with local business and agencies within the community. It’s important for our community to realize that those living at or below the Living Wage are not the minority and we should work around this and collaborate as a community to support these workers.”
Kunitz will be working over the summer to compile stories and create communications and support materials for the Living Wage in Cranbrook. If you or anyone you know would be interested in sharing a story, please contact Delaney at 250.489.3111 or via e-mail at email@example.com