The Rising Cost of Living
Geographically, there are a high proportion of low income households along the eastern urban fringe.
The East Metro Region has a significant proportion of households where household incomes can’t keep pace with the rising cost of livingand people are struggling to make ends meet.
These people are not receiving the benefits of the mining boom – in WA the gap between the have and the have nots in the highest in the country.
The minimum wage relative to average weekly earnings has continued to decline. The minimum wage in WA is worth only about 41% of average weekly earnings.
And in addition, the cost of living for low income households in WA has been rising faster than wages.
For example, from 2009 to 2011, food and rent increased 7%, electricity 36%, gas and other household fuels 31%, water and sewerage17% - and these are just a few.
The projected increases in electricity costs out to 2015-16 are substantial and are likely to have a devastating impact on low income households.