Supply of Living Wage Jobs (WA)

Living-wage jobs for Washington workers are in short supply.

Among Washington job openings in 2014, fewer than half paid a living wage for families with children. And fewer than 1 in 4 paid a living wage for a household with 2 adults (1 working), 1 school-age child, and 1 toddler.  Although job-supply data are only available at the state level, nearly 42% of all non-farm jobs in Washington were with King County employers.  For households with pre-school-aged children, the primary routes to making ends meet in 2014 were:

  • Landing a full-time job that paid more than $30 an hour (with one wage-earner).

  • Landing full-time jobs for two wage-earners, each making more than $20.46 an hour.

  • Working multiple jobs (often with more than one wage-earner).

NOTE: Because expenses are higher in King County than in Washington State overall, workers had to earn more to make a living wage in King County than in Washington State. For households with 1 adult, or with 2 adults working fulltime, child care expenses can take a significant portion of annual income.


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