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Why This Indicator Matters

A basic needs approach identifies a market basket of budget items needed for a working family to maintain a reasonable standard of living. Most basic needs budgets include the same seven expense categories used by the U.S. Departments of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics: food, housing, transportation, health care, child care, clothing, and personal care. The livable wage calculation also includes an estimate of state and federal taxes.
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Definitions: The estimated hourly wage required to meet basic expenses for a single-parent, three person family. A livable wage is calculated by dividing the total expenses in a basic needs budget by the number of hours that make up a year of full-time work.

Data Source: Maine Department of Labor, Center for Workforce Research & Information

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