The sliding scale is a tool that allows for a service to be obtained at multiple price points based on the circumstances of the purchaser. Anam Cara Path offers a sliding scale because of my commitment to serving individuals and/or communities that would otherwise not be able to afford the services. For a sliding scale to work it relies on the principles of truthfulness, respect for complexity, and accountability. I do not ask for income verification. I trust my students and clients to be honest. Community thrives when accountability is a central value, because that is where trust grows and depth work can be done. Teachers/practitioners deserve to get paid and students/clients deserve classes/sessions which recognize the multiple realities of economic access and privilege that exist.
Here is a general guidelines about how I currently price my sliding scale and to help you determine where you fall on it.
- The highest dollar cost reflects the true cost of the class or service. It is the cost that the practitioner would charge all students in the absence of a sliding scale. If you have access to financial security, own property or have personal savings, you would not traditionally qualify for sliding scale services. If you are able to pay for “wants” and spend little time worried about securing necessities in your life, you have economic privilege and power in our community. This price is for you.
- The middle cost (when there is one) reflects the practitioner’s acknowledgement that paying the full cost would prevent some folks from being able to attend, but who do not honestly find themselves reflected in either descriptions for the highest cost or the lowest. If you are struggling to conquer debt or build savings or move away from paycheck to paycheck living but have access to steady income and are not spending most of your time thinking about meeting basic needs such as food, shelter, medical care, child care, etc., you belong here. If you, however, can ask others for financial support, such as family members, partners, or friends, please consider using those personal resources before you use the resources of the sliding scale and limit opportunities for others.
- The bottom cost represents an honest acknowledgment by the teacher and practitioner that there are folks whose economic circumstances would prevent them from being a part of classes if there was not be a deliberate opportunity made for them to access services at a cost that is reflective of their economic realities. If you struggle to maintain access to needs such as health care, housing, food, child care, and are living paycheck to paycheck or are in significant debt, you belong probably belong here and you deserve a community that honors your price as equal an economic offering as the person who can pay the highest tier. Even when the lower tier is still prohibitive, I will work with folks to offer extended payment plans and other solutions.
Typically, there is a limited amount slots for products, services, and classes offered at the middle and lower end of the scale. Please be mindful that if you purchase a price at the lowest end of the scale when you can truthfully afford the higher ticket prices, you are limiting access to those who truly need the gift of financial flexibility. Being honest with yourself and your financial situation when engaging with sliding scale practices grows strong and sustainable communities. It also respects the work of teachers and creators, like myself, you have families to support and rent to pay. Additionally, when I am paid fairly, I am able to invest more time and resources to free and lower cost offerings.
Excerpt taken from wortsandtraining.com