B.C.\’s New Minimum Wage Now in Effect
On June 1st, 2018, B.C.\’s minimum wage rose by $1.30 to boost the province\’s current wage of $11.35 per hour to $12.65. The wage increase is part of B.C.\’s plan to raise the current wage to just over $15 per hour by 2021.
To make that happen, the minimum wage will increase every year until that amount is met:
- June 1, 2019: $13.85 an hour ($1.20 increase)
- June 1, 2020: $14.60 an hour ($0.75 increase)
- June 1, 2021: $15.20 an hour ($0.60 increase)
B.C.\’s minimum wage remained at $8 per hour from 2001 to 2011 under the Liberal\’s Gordon Campbell government. When Christy Clark, also of the B.C. Liberal Party, became premier in 2011, she increase the minimum wage to $8.75 per hour. By the time she left office in 2017, the province\’s minimum wage was $10.85.
With the rising cost of living in B.C., the poverty line is about $15 an hour. So there are hundreds of thousands of workers who, even if they work full-time, have a wage below the poverty line. The math just doesn\’t add up.
Although this is positive for workers, it does put added pressure on businesses, especially small businesses. It appears that minimum wage is set to continue to rise so businesses will need to put a plan in place to make this happen.
Ontario, at $14 per hour, and Alberta at $13.60 per hour, have the highest minimum wages in Canada. Alberta is planning to raise its minimum wage to $15 per hour in October.