Ontario Minimum Wage to Increase
October 1st marks the fourth consecutive annual increase of Ontario’s minimum wage, bringing it up to $11.60.
The increase is an effort by the province to boost income for workers, including:
~Updating its Fair Wage Policy to ensure government contract workers continue to receive fair wages and benefits
~Reviewing pay equity legislation to help close the gender wage gap
~Moving forward with a basic income pilot, which will provide a minimum income level to help people meet their needs
~Implementing free tuition for more than 210,000 students and increasing supports for apprentices
~Changes to the minimum wage are announced by April 1 of each year, and take effect on October 1. This gives businesses and workers time to plan for any increases.
~By October 2017, the general minimum wage will have increased by almost 70 per cent since 2004, when it stood at $6.85.
~The minimum wage remained frozen between 1996 and 2003. This will be the 11th minimum wage increase since 2004.
~Special minimum wage rates that apply to liquor servers, students under 18, hunting and fishing guides, and homeworkers will also increase at the same time.
~The latest rates are the result of changes to legislation that were passed in 2014 to tie minimum wage increases to Ontario’s Consumer Price Index (CPI), a measure of inflation. The move was a result of a recommendation by the Minimum Wage Advisory Panel.
~The industries employing the most minimum wage earners are accommodation and food, retail trade, and information, culture and recreation.