The Ontario government is both increasing the minimum wage and condemning low-wage workers to a life of poverty. Premier Kathleen Wynne announced her government will up the lowest legal wage an employer can pay a worker to $11 per hour as of June 1, 2014. However, workers’ rights advocates point out that at $11 per hour, anyone working full-time would still make 16% under the poverty line. These advocates will continue to push the government to make the minimum wage $14 per hour so anyone who works full-time would make at least 10% more than the poverty line.
This announcement came on the heels of the much-anticipated recommendations of the Minimum Wage Advisory Panel. The panel included a proposal to automatically increase the minimum wage according to inflation every year. Though the Wynne government says it will adopt this proposal, if it does so by using $11 per hour as the starting point, minimum wage earners will be condemned to a life of poverty.
Visit www.raisetheminimumwage.ca to sign the petition in support of a $14 minimum wage.