Mapping of a Non-Living Wage

Now that you have figured out what the options are for the 24% of Baltimore residents earning $20,090.00 or less for a family of three it’s time to organize that information and start making some relationships with that data.

Using a spreadsheet or whatever is easiest for you start with the location of your most affordable housing and determine the distance to the following: Food, Child Care and Medical Care. Once you’ve determined distances, figure out what the different methods of transportation will get you from the home location to final destination. If public transportation is available be sure to include how many transfers are necessary (changes in bus/train)?

Also list the estimated duration of the commute. We will need this data to determine how much childcare is necessary beyond the initial estimate of 40 hours per week.

How to Earn a Non-Living Wage

The Federal minimum wage is currently set to $7.25, or $15,600.00 if you are working 40 hours a week. The hourly living wage necessary for a family of three is $29.58 and $12.36 for a single adult based on a 40 hour work week.

To get a better sense of what systems 24% of Baltimore residents have to function within, you will need to find jobs that pay roughly $386.00 a week or $9.60 per hour for a 40 hour work week. Since most low wage jobs pay $7.25 an hour and don’t pay overtime you may have to find multiple jobs at $7.25 totaling 53 hours a week.

Add your job(s) to the document listed above and determine the distance from job to home and what different types of transportation options are available. Also list the estimated duration of the commute. We will need this data to determine how much childcare is necessary beyond the initial estimate of 40 hours per week.

Analysis of a Non-Living Wage

According to recent estimates more than 45 million people, or 14.5 percent of all Americans, lived below the poverty line. Nearly 149,000 people, or 24% of Baltimore’s population of 620,000, are living below the poverty line which is $20,090.00 a year for a family of three. The living wage calculator created by MIT determined that a family of 3 needs an annual income of $61,528.00 to meet its basic needs in Baltimore City. That is a $41,438.00 discrepancy meaning 24% of Baltimore can not meet its most basic needs.

To further analyze systems and discover opportunities for social entrepreneurship you will first need to determine what an annual income of $20,090.00, or $1674.16 monthly, will provide you within Baltimore City. Based on percentages that came from the Living Wage Calculator you need to provide the following to a family of three within Baltimore City. The family will consist of 1 Adult and 2 Children.


12% or $200.98 monthly: First, the USDA estimates that a family of three will need $486.00 a month for food on the Thrifty Plan, $683.00 a month for on the Low-Cost Plan, or $796.00 a month on the Moderate-Cost Plan to meet their basic nutritional needs. For this task you will need to find a location(s) that can supply the family with the necessary food items to complete a balanced diet that includes: Vegetables, Fruit, Grain, Meat and Dairy. You will need to confirm that the store has these items, no guessing. In order to survive, $286.00 must be taken out of one of the budgets below. It will be up to you to pick which one.

Child Care

18% or $301.34 monthly: No, saying grandma will watch the kids isn’t an option. This is a real expense that needs to be supplied, so see what you can get for 30 hrs a week at $301.34.


10% or $167.41 monthly: Try and use the website and see what options are for a family of three. You can make up the gender, ages and sex of the parent and two children.


34% or $569.21 monthly: When you are choosing housing, do your best to keep proximity to jobs, shopping and daycare in mind. Also, you will need at least one bedroom, if not two. Kids can not be legally sleeping on the floor or couch. Per child protective services they need a mattress so there needs to be room for it. Also, unless you plan on taking the kids to school, a public school will need to be close by.


16% or $267.86 monthly: The family will need to get back and forth between work, shopping, school, daycare, etc. How do they do it? If this is a car, what is the cost of insurance, registration, gas, etc.


10% or $167.41 monthly: This will cover things like cell phones, utilities, clothing, entertainment, etc. What options are there to buy these items that are close to the housing?

Create a new blog post title Analysis of a Non-Living Wage with links, maps and other data you discovered for each of the five categories.