The campaign to raise the minimum wage is about to heat up. Today Minister of Labour, Yasir Naqvi announced an advisory panel to study a possible minimum wage increase in 2014. The panel, chaired by Anil Verma, a professor at UofT, will hold consultations and make recommendations on how Ontario should determine future minimum wage increases. The panel was promised in the 2013 budget after widespread mobilizing in cities across Ontario calling for a $14 minimum wage.
The current minimum wage of $10.25 puts workers 19% below the poverty line. While food, transit and rent costs have soared, the minimum wage has been frozen for over 3 years. As WAC member, Angel Reyes stated in a Toronto Star article today:
It is very hard work and very hard to pay the bills…When your landlord calls, you have to pay. There is food, transportation, laundry. It’s very tight. We need a $14 minimum wage now.
The Campaign to Raise the Minimum Wage is calling for an immediate increase in the minimum wage to $14 – the amount in 2013 needed to bring the minimum wage 10% above the poverty line for a single person working 35 hours a week.
Cities across Ontario are joining in the call for a $14 minimum wage. We have a short amount of time to make our voices heard. Check out the new campaign website to find out how to get involved! Now is the time to endorse the campaign and help organize for a minimum wage increase in your community!
Starting August 14th, we will be holding provincial days of action on the 14th of every month. Start planning what action you could take in your community! Let’s fight for a raise for Ontario together!
The Campaign to Raise the Minimum Wage is coordinated by ACORN, Freedom 90, Mennonite New Life Centre, OCAP, Ontario Campaign 2000, Parkdale Community Legal Services, Put Food in the Budget, Social Planning Toronto, Toronto and York Region Labour Council and Workers’ Action Centre.