Ontario raising minimum wage

Government says it will mean annual salary boost of $2,200

Ontario raising minimum wage

Almost one million workers in Canada’s most populous province will get a raise in October.

The provincial government said that those who currently earn the minimum wage of $15.50 per hour will then earn $16.55, adding up to about $2,200 more in wages every year, if they work 40 hours per week.

“This latest increase is a fair and balanced approach that means more money in their pockets so they can support their families and continuing building a stronger Ontario for all of us,” says Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development.

The move will affect 942,400 workers, according to the government. This increase is tied to the Ontario Consumer Price Index for 2023, says the province.

The increased money will result in a wage hike of 6.8 per cent for the 40 per cent of workers who are currently at or below the current minimum wage of $15.50 per hour and many work in retail trade. Almost 25 per cent are in accommodation and food services, says the government.

While this effort will be welcomed by many employees, it comes after the same provincial government cancelled three days of temporary sick leave due to COVID-related reasons, which represented a “wasted opportunity” says a human resources professional.

The new rate will one of the highest in the country, says the government. For example, Quebec has a minimum wage of $14.25 an hour, B.C. workers receive a minimum wage of $15.65 an hour, and Alberta’s lowest wage rate sites remain at $15 per hour.

However, on April 1, Yukon minimum wage employees will get a bump in paycheques, from $15.70 to $16.77 per hour.

Nova Scotia recently announced it will hasten an increase to the province’s minimum wage, due largely to high inflation.

In addition to the regular minimum hourly rate rising, special minimum wage numbers will go up as well, says the Ontario government.

  • Students younger than 18 — who work 28 hours a week or less when school is in session or work during a school break or summer holidays — will see a boost from $14.60 to $15.60 an hour.
  • Homeworkers (those who do paid work out of their own homes for employers), will earn $18.20 an hour, which represents a raise from its current $17.05 per hour.
  • Hunting, fishing and wilderness guides, will be making $77.60 to $82.85 per day when working less than five consecutive hours in one day, and $155.25 to $165.75 per day when working five or more hours in a day.

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