Premier Wynne needs to put the “fair” part of the minimum wage act into the document – $11. an hour is not fair.

By Pepper Parr

February 27, 2014


Got an email from Yasir Naqvi, an Ontario Liberal party MPP who told me he was proud to stand with Premier Wynne when she announced the government was increasing the minimum wage to $11 an hour on June 1st of this year. 

The government introduced the Fair Minimum Wage Act in the Legislature which is apparently going to tie all future increases to inflation because it will create consistency for businesses and Ontario workers.

While the increase is certainly welcome – why is the province being so cheap.  A household hasn’t a chance of getting out of poverty at $11 an hour.  Indexing that amount to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) assures society that those below the poverty line will always be there.

The increase to $11 an hour in June is fine.  Now take it up to $12 in a year, then to $13 a year after that and then to $14 a year after then THEN index the amount to the CPI.

Naqvi assures us that “businesses, labour groups, youth and workers support our legislation because they helped shape it: the Minimum Wage Panel was made up of all these stakeholders. They held province-wide consultations, received over 400 submissions, and brought forward unanimous recommendations that we are acting on.”

I’ve yet to meet anyone earning a minimum wage tell me that they are happy with this increase and the indexing.

MPP Naqvi points out that “the New Democrats ignored the Minimum wage panel and were silent on minimum wage—in the House, the media, and the by-elections. After a year of ducking, it’s too late for the NDP to try and be leaders. They need to do the right thing and support our plan.”

“Between the NDP’s flip-flopping and the PC’s radical ideas, we know the opposition will try to stall, so we need your help to pass this legislation.”

That’s just so much politicking – shame on the Ontario Liberals for doing this on the backs of the poor people.

“The Liberal plan for jobs is practical and it’s realistic” says MPP Naqvi. “Together”, he adds “ we are building a fairer, more prosperous Ontario.

There is no fairness in this act and at $11 an hour there is no prosperity for people earning a minimum wage.

Revise the bill Madame Premier make it really fair and decent.

Pepper Parr is a lifelong Liberal who has voted for every federal Liberal leader as far back as Louis St. Laurent.  He has served as the president of Liberal Party Associations on more than one occasion. He is the publisher of the Burlington Gazette and expect to tell the Premier that her that the “fair”of the minimum wage act just is missing.  She can fix that.

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