The provincial Ontario government has announced an increase to the general minimum wage, upping it by $0.50 to $15.50 per hour, in efforts to counter the impact of rising inflation. The third increase made over the last 12 months, it will take effect onOctober 1, 2022.
“For many Ontarians, wages haven’t kept up with the increasing cost of living, making it harder than ever to make ends meet,” said Premier Doug Ford. “Ontario’s workers are the best anywhere, and they will be at the forefront of building the province. They deserve to have more money in their pockets and the increase we’re announcing today is one more way we are delivering for our workers.”
The increase, which is tied to the Consumer Price Index, will translate to an annual pay raise of $1,768 for workers earning the general minimum wage and working 40 hours per week.
Liquor servers working those hours will see a raise of $5,512 per year. Students under 18 will see an increase to $14.60 per hour, while hunting, fishing, and wilderness guides will receive $77.60 per day, up from $75, when working less than five hours per day, and a raise of $155.25 when working five or more hours daily.
Homeworkers -- who do paid work out of their own homes for employers -- will see their hourly pay increase to $17.06, from the previous $16.50.
“Our government is leading the country with unprecedented changes that rebalance the scales and help workers earn bigger paycheques,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “Raising the minimum wage is part of our workers-first plan to give hundreds of thousands of families a hand up as we build a stronger economy that works for everyone.”
This follows the province’s move in January to increase the wage to $15, and to remove the lower minimum wage for liquor servers.
The province has also proposed expanding this minimum wage increase to digital platform workers for active hours worked via the Working for Workers Act 2 legislation which, if passed, would make Ontario the first province to enact such a measure. Other potential legislation tabled includes a movement for foundational rights for digital platform workers, a requirement for employers to disclose electronic monitoring of their employees, among others.