Basic living shouldn't be a luxury

16 October 2023

Basic living shouldn’t be a luxury

To bring attention to the rising cost of living, VCC created a high-end window display— rotating plinths, jacquard textiles, a gold-plated coffered ceiling, and even a security guard. But instead of wristwatches or cashmere cardigans, we put the simple things on display. Eggs. Bread. Toothpaste. The things Calgarians are fighting to afford. The statistics tell a harrowing story. 

Price Increase for Goods (from 2019 - 2023)

+ 31.2%


+ 31.3%


+ 22.4%

4L Milk

+ 39.2%


+ 22.2%


+ 41%


A new normal?

Alberta has among the highest rates of food insecurity in Canada. Forty-one thousand Calgarians are considered to be the working poor. And almost one in five of us is in desperate need of affordable housing. Poverty isn’t something that happens somewhere else to someone else. It’s something that’s happening here. 

Everyone Has a Role to Play

We’re raising awareness about the rising cost of living, increased housing costs, food prices and stagnant wages have brought many Calgarians to their financial breaking point.

Even with measures to slow inflation, we know those extra costs are not coming down – this is a new normal.

Everyone has a role to play:

  • We need all orders of government to step up to help people meet their basic needs from food to housing.
  • Employers need to consider how the cost of living crisis has impacted their employees and learn more about living wages.
  • Everyone should learn about poverty in their community – it’s not just unhoused people living in shelter, people who are struggling are our neighbours, friends and families. 

Calgary’s Newest Luxury Store Sells Toilet Paper

From October 17-31, the public is invited to Unaford, a faux luxury storefront at 918 Centre St N highlighting the growing issue of poverty in Calgary.