Newfoundland and Labrador reviewing minimum wage

Province looking for input from stakeholders in reviewing one of the lowest minimum wages in Canada
By
|hrreporter.com|Last Updated: 02/07/2005

Newfoundland and Labrador is conducting a review of its minimum wage.

Joan Burke, Minister of Human Resources, Labour and Employment, said the Labour Relations Agency will carry out a review of the wage this fall.

“The current wage will be re-examined in terms of adequacy and impact for affected stakeholders, including a comparative analysis with other jurisdictions, particularly those in Atlantic Canada,” said Burke.

According to Statistics Canada, about 8.5 per cent of paid employees in Newfoundland and Labrador (16,100 workers) were paid minimum wage in 2003. The minimum wage was last increased in November 2002 to $6 per hour.

Under the province’s labour laws, the government is required to review the minimum wage within two years of the date of the last change.

“Our province has the highest percentage of minimum-wage earners in the country,” said Burke. “I look forward to this opportunity to review the minimum wage in our province and consider how we might achieve and maintain minimum-wage parity with the rest of Atlantic Canada.”

As part of the review process, stakeholders are invited to forward written submissions to provide input and recommendations on the minimum wage. Submissions will be accepted through regular mail, e-mail and the Labour Relations Agency website.

“I am interested in hearing all perspectives and opinions on the minimum wage to inform government in its review of this issue,” said Burke. “It is important that we gain an understanding of the varied perspectives to help us strike a fair and reasonable balance, within our fiscal realities, for all those who may be impacted by any change to the minimum wage.”

Burke said the government knows the minimum wage is one of the lowest in Canada. (For more information about minimum wage rates across Canada, see the related articles link below.)

“There is room for improvement,” she said. “The Income Support and Employment Divisions of Human Resources, Labour and Employment are keenly aware of wage levels and those working people who still require our assistance to meet their families’ needs.”

Written submissions can be sent to:

Labour Standards Division

Labour Relations Agency

Beothuck Building, 3rd Floor

P.O. Box 8700

St. John’s, NL

A1B 4J6

Submissions can be e-mailed to

labourstandards@gov.nl.ca

, faxed to the Labour Standards Division at (709) 729-3528 or visit the website at

www.gov.nl.ca/lra

to use an electronic submission form.

Interested parties can also provide comment by phoning the Labour Standards Division at (709) 729-2743 or (877) 563-1063.

The deadline for submissions is Oct. 15, 2004.

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