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Living Wage for Families Update


Statement about the Living Wage for Families Program

November 1, 2022

After fourteen years, First Call Child and Youth Advocacy Society is winding down our operation of the Living Wage for Families BC employer certification program. We have reached an agreement with Vancity Community Foundation and as of November 1, 2022 VCF is operating the program.

First Call co-founded and operated this program to tackle family poverty. Our research tells us that many children grow up in households where parents are working full time but can’t make ends meet. First Call is proud to have operated the Living Wage for Families BC program and to have championed the discussion in BC about the important role living wages play in reducing child and family poverty. Today, the global living wage movement is gaining momentum and the concept has become a familiar one to many people.

Over the past year, First Call transitioned from an unincorporated coalition to an independent, not-for-profit organization with a new board of directors. This process prompted us to sharpen our focus on our core work and build on our thirty-year history of raising public awareness, mobilizing communities and advocating for public policies that support the rights of children, youth, and their families, including our upcoming 26th annual BC Child Poverty Report Card.

Vancity Community Foundation is now operating BC’s living wage certification program. First Call will be transferring some program assets to Vancity Community Foundation. First Call is committed to complying with all laws protecting the privacy rights of individuals in the course of collecting, using, holding or disclosing personal information. First Call is also committed to protecting the intellectual property of employers who provided us with proprietary or other non-public information as a part of their application and involvement with the program.

We greatly appreciate the partners, funders, and community stakeholders who helped us grow and steward BC’s living wage program over the years, and we applaud the employers who rose to the challenge by committing to paying their employees a living wage.

If you have any questions, please review the FAQs below or email us at info@firstcallbc.org

FAQs

FOR LIVING WAGE CERTIFIED EMPLOYERS

I am a certified living wage employer. What will happen to my certification after 2022?
We will honour your present certification until December 31, 2022. This means that on your request First Call will provide a letter verifying you are currently a certified living wage employer. Contact us at info@firstcallbc.org

For certification under new 2022 living wage rates, we recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com to learn about their program and recertification process. A Vancity Community Foundation representative may contact you about how to re-certify after new 2022 living wage rates are announced in November.

Will my original application/implementation plan be shared with the new certification program or will I need to send it in again?
First Call is committed to complying with all laws protecting the privacy rights of individuals in the course of collecting, using, holding or disclosing personal information. We’re also committed to protecting the intellectual property of employers who provided us with proprietary or other non-public information as a part of their application and involvement with the program.

On your request, we will send you documents that we have on file related to your application. Contact us at info@firstcallbc.org

We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation to find out about their recertification process.

What living wage employer information will be shared with the new certification program? How will you handle my personal information and information about my company/society? Will my business/logo will be on the website?
First Call is committed to complying with all laws protecting the privacy rights of individuals in the course of collecting, using, holding or disclosing personal information. We’re also committed to protecting the intellectual property of employers who provided us with proprietary or other non-public information as a part of their application and involvement with the program.

Vancity Community Foundation is now operating BC’s living wage certification program. Subject to our agreement with Vancity Community Foundation, and applicable laws, First Call is transferring certified employer names, contact information, and certification date to VCF. Employer’s logos were removed from the website prior to the transfer of ownership. A representative of Vancity Community Foundation may contact you in the future about the use of your logo or you can follow-up with them directly at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

On your request, we will send you documents that we have on file related to your application. Contact us at info@firstcallbc.org

Will the certification fees be the same?
We cannot answer questions related to certification with Vancity Community Foundation’s program. We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation directly at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

I am a certified living wage employer but I have not paid my recertification fee for 2022. Is my certification still in good standing?
The deadline for paying 2022 recertification fees was May 31, 2022. We are no longer receiving payments. We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation to arrange for recertification at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

I didn’t recertify our company/organization this year. Do I need to reapply if I would like to participate in this program again?
We cannot answer questions about the criteria related to certification with a different program. We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

I am a certified living wage employer and I paid my recertification fee. I need a letter confirming that I am a certified living wage employer in good standing. Are you able to provide a confirmation letter?
First Call will honour your current certification at the 2021 living wage rate until December 31, 2022 and, on request, we can provide you with a letter that states this until the end of the year. Contact us at info@firstcallbc.org.

We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

I have a Living Wage Employer plaque – will it still be valid? If not, will I need to buy another one?
As a certified employer, you are aware that each year in November new living wage rates are calculated for a variety of regions in BC. Employers then have six months to recertify by agreeing to pay the new rate(s).

Living wage employer plaques signify your living wage employer certification for the years in which you recertified at the living wage rate(s) for those years.

We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com about their program’s policies.

I have many decals in use to display our participation as a living wage employer. Will I get new decals? Will I have to pay for them?
Living wage employer decals signify your living wage employer certification for the years in which you recertified at the living wage rate(s) for those years.

We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

FOR EMPLOYER APPLICANTS AND INQUIRIES

I am a new applicant to the living wage employer certification program and I already submitted my application form. What should I do? What is the status of my application?
Negotiations between First Call and Vancity Community Foundation regarding the transfer of Living Wage program assets took longer than anticipated. Due to this process, we were unable to review applications in September. We apologize if this has caused you any inconvenience.

On your request, we will send you documents that we have on file related to your application. Contact us at info@firstcallbc.org

Please contact The Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation about how to resubmit your application to them.

Our application / implementation plan has been reviewed and is in process with Living Wage for Families BC. Now what?
We are no longer considering living wage employer implementation plans. We apologize if this has caused you any inconvenience. We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

I am planning to apply to be a certified living wage employer and I have questions about how to do this. What do I do now?
As we are no longer certifying living wage employers, we cannot answer questions about criteria related to certification with a different program. We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

Will the criteria to be a living wage employer change with the new certification program?
We cannot answer questions about the criteria related to certification with a different program. We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

FOR PUBLIC SECTOR EMPLOYERS

I represent a municipal government or school board living wage certified employer. We have language in our policy and in communications materials that references this program and your organization. What should we do?
We are aware that some public sector employers have included references to First Call in their living wage policies. Please get in touch with us directly and we’ll work with you to resolve any issues. Contact us at info@firstcallbc.org

FOR EMPLOYEES

I am an employee at a company that is a certified living wage employer, but I am not receiving a living wage. | My employer claims to be a living wage employer but they are not certified, and I am not receiving a living wage. | I work for a contractor who should be paying a living wage in order to bid on jobs but I am not receiving a living wage. | Where and how can I raise my concerns?
We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

I have questions about how living wage rates are calculated.
We recommend that you contact the Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation at anastasia_french@vancity.com.

VANCITY COMMUNITY FOUNDATION CONTACT INFORMATION

What is the new contact email for the Living Wage employer certification program at Vancity Community Foundation?

The Living Wage for Families BC program at Vancity Community Foundation can be reached at

Email: Anastasia_French@vancity.com

Mailing Address: 409 – 312 Main Street Vancouver, BC V6A 2T2