Self-Sufficiency Standard


The Center for Women’s Welfare Self-Sufficiency Standard defines the income working families need to meet a minimum yet adequate level, taking into account family composition, ages of children, and geographic differences in costs. The Standard is an affordability and living wage economic security measure that provides an alternative to the official poverty measure.


The Hawaii State Commission on Status of Women (HSCSW) is a statewide feminist government agency the works toward equality for women and girls in the State by acting as a catalyst for positive change through advocacy, education, collaboration and program development. Read more. | Honolulu, HI

Bridge to Hope (BTH) is a partnership between the University of Hawai’i and the State Dept. of Human Services (DHS) supporting post-secondary education as a means for welfare recipients to achieve life-long economic self-sufficiency, leaving not only welfare but also poverty. Read more.

Bridge to Hope used the Standard to advocate for increases to TANF benefits.

How to cite

All Self-Sufficiency Standard data that has been produced by the Center for Women’s Welfare is publicly available. When using the data, please credit the Self-Sufficiency Standard at the Center for Women’s Welfare, University of Washington.

Contact with any questions regarding methodology or appropriate citation.

The Standard in Use - Hawaii

Labor Union Negotiations

Labor Union Negotiations The Standard has been used in California, Connecticut, Illinois, New York, New Jersey, Hawaii, Nebraska, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington State

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Hawaii’s Minimum Wage

Hawaii’s Minimum Wage The Self-Sufficiency Standard was an integral tool for increasing Hawaii’s minimum wage to $6.75 on January 1, 2006 and $7.25 on January

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