What is the difference between the minimum wage and a fair wage? What does it mean to offer sustainable wages?
Well, the minimum wage is exactly what it sounds like; it is the minimum that must legally be paid. It does not mean a person could survive on it, and it certainly is not enough to support a family.
A fair wage, on the other hand, is when someone is paid what the industry says is fair and right for a certain skill. It means that if you are able to perform the task with expertise then you deserve a certain amount.
Sustainable or living wage means that a person is able to make with salary and benefits a wage that can sustain a family of four at or above poverty level.
Why am I taking the time to explain the difference between these wage levels? As we have engaged in hurricane relief efforts, we have seen so many families who were working to live and the little they had washed away in a flood. We hope/pray that we can make a difference in these lives. They have few to no other options or avenues for survival. That is why we have worked so hard at Threads by Nomad to keep our employees working. We pay those who work for us here and abroad a “fair wage.” We give them at or above the industry demands for their skills. Our eventual goal, however, is to be not just fair, but sustainable. We are actively working on that.
This weekend there will be a Threads by Nomad shopping event in Alexandria. Please go. Enjoy the beauty and the feel of the fabrics. And if you purchase, know that you are purchasing with a purpose and purchasing at a fair wage for the person who created the garment. Know that you really are making a difference.