Summary: GUIDELINES FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF A LIVING WAGE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF
The intention of this document is to demonstrate how a living wage agreement could be implemented at
the University of Virginia. This is a policy which would have positive effects for the hundreds of UVA
employees, both direct and contracted, who currently work for considerably less than a living wage.
1. What is the current living wage in Charlottesville, VA?
A. Wages. Beginning in fall of 2012, the living wage will be at least $13.00 per hour, based on figures
provided by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI). On a yearly basis, the living wage must be re-
calculated to comply with current EPI figures, which take into account annual inflation and cost-of-
living measures specific to the Charlottesville area. Calculations for individual employees will be based
on EPI figures for a two-earner, two-dependent family. Because EPI figures include the cost of health
benefits in their per-hour calculation, the University or contractors may factor in their yearly
contribution toward employee health care in reaching the living wage number. However, other benefits
provided by the University or contractor, including leave and education benefits, may not be included
in the base wage calculation. This calculation will be made annually on September 1.
B. Health insurance. The University will continue to provide a comprehensive benefits package to all
direct employees. Currently, for direct employees at the bottom of the pay scale, the University states
that it pays an equivalent of between $6.42 and $9.54 of total benefits, including between $1.93 and
$5.06 per hour worth of health insurance benefits, or approximately 89% of total health insurance costs
for employees with premium packages covering family members as well. These benefits must not be