The Working Class Declaring An Increase In Minimum Wage by E. V. Hutcheon Jan 28,2014

The Working Class Declaring An Increase In Minimum Wage by  E. V. Hutcheon  Jan 28,2014

 

em mw ACornwall Ontario – In the past, Ontario has had one of the lowest minimum wage rates across the Country. Today, the minimum wage as it stands at $10.25 since 2010 and is currently, one of the highest in the Country.  If you’re feeding a family or just trying to support yourself and you work approximately 35 hours per week earning minimum wage, then you are barely getting by. Without taxes, personal expenses or any tips you may receive while working on the job, you will make less than $20,000 a year. Full time minimum wage worker Jeffrey D’artagnan says,

 

“I think the minimum is far to low it needs to go up to at least over 15$ per hour. Right now it is too low to support ones self and is a joke. If people are in school trying to better themselves and have a part time job- that won’t make enough to go to school and support themselves.”

 

Cornwall City Councilor Elaine Macdonald also states,

 

“It used to be that if you had a job you moved out of the poverty grouping, now that’s not the case. Now you can have a full time job and still be poor. There’s something wrong with that.” 

 

According to the Provincial Advisory Panel, that number should increase annually.

People want an increase in minimum wage without an increase in their taxes, enabling them to advantageously support themselves, as well their family. Before the Canadian Liberal Party came to power in 2003, our minimum wage stood at  $6.85. As mentioned above, this is one of the lowest rates the province has ever had.  Now, people are asking for the current high rate to be raised further. So far nothing has been said to happen regarding to the higher the annual rate. Even though there was recently a campaign held by the Workers Action Centre, to increase the minimum wage up to $14.00 per hour.  Designer and artist Tina Cosic comments,

 

“I think it should be raised because there are many people who do work minimum wage and support their families.” 

 

There so far is no set in stone standard, for what the amount for minimum wage should be increased or decreased too.  There is no way to say for sure as of now when the next inflation of the minimum wage rate will be. For now it is open for discussion. Tina was asked her opinion on the matter, how much she felt minimum wage should go up? She replied,

 

“Well at least $11.25 because if they have that little bit extra, it’s possible to at least cover the rent bills every month. That’s not even a starter for other bills plus living expenses.”

 

In the past ten years, the average for people working minimum wage has doubled. If more and more people are being added to that list than in the past, isn’t it about time the Canadian government reviews the budget on minimum wage? Even more important, in the next few years if it does get reviewed, how many years will it take for the change to finally be in effect?

 

A recent study done by Statistics Canada gathered from 2003 through to 2011, gives us evidence to report that minimum wage earners are more likely to be young people in the work place. This report did not include the wages for the self employed, retired, people on welfare, the unemployed or stay at home parents.  The study did show that almost 40% of minimum wage workers are 25 years of age or older.  Councilor Elaine Macdonald says,

 

“Change the wage because obviously, its the way it’s broken down and not only has it doubled but it’s now at about half a million people and the majority of them are women and they’re not kids anymore.”

 

Elaine also went on to state,

 

 “It used to be that minimum wage jobs were held by high school kids you know, making a few dollars for their weekend entertainment or what ever, but not minimum wage jobs are primarily being held by parents, and grandparents.”

 

Currently women account for almost two thirds of all minimum wage workers. More women work for minimum wage jobs than above minimum wage jobs. This should also be taken into account when placed beside the average for men, which is only one third of the total amount of minimum wage workers.  The minimum wage currently, has been frozen for four years now. There is a possibility that when the time comes, the rate will rise, as many would agree. If it does get raised, it will decrease poverty provincially by 10%.

E.V. Hutcheon is a 2nd year St. Lawrence College Journalism Student.  She has professionally edited a Polish history book and is hoping to see her dream and passion of writing into a career. Previously living Toronto, E.V. is now a proud Cornwall citizen. On her off time you can usually find her at home writing her latest book, or walking along the St Lawrence River. 

 River Kings

 

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36 Comments on "The Working Class Declaring An Increase In Minimum Wage by E. V. Hutcheon Jan 28,2014"

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Darcy Neal
Member
The working class declare that they desire to force people to pay higher prices for food, fuels and other fun stuff. Let’s force up the minimum price of milk, bread and butter. Let’s force up the minimum price of gasoline, diesel, natural gas, propane, and electricity. Let’s force up the price of going to the movies, going to music concerts and entering amusement parks. Are you amused by the working class desire to increase working and living cost? Many small businesses can barely afford to pay for workers. Let’s force those workers out of a job by making those jobs… Read more »
Eric
Guest

Who works 35 hour weeks? Some of the 88,000 on the Ontario sunshine list? Some of the 200,000 Federally?
Cleaners, Security, non union Couriers etc. are probably closer to 44 hours.

I am all for people earning a decent living, what other options are there than raising pay? Higher take home with less tax? Perhaps higher pay if employer payroll costs decrease?

Do you want to pay more for products than now? The money has to come from somewhere and the vast majority of business owners have staff of 100 or less.

Furtz
Member

Yes Darcy. We must keep the working poor working and poor.

garfield
Guest
We already have greatly increased taxes/user fees under the McGuinty regime. We now have the highest electricity rates on the continent, we have become a ‘have not’ province for first time in history,,, and now McWynne, the unelected premier, wants to decimate small business. Why? For additional votes at election time! This Liberal gov’t has proven to be totally fiscally inept. Pandering to unions has helped them to stay in power regardless of their numerous screwups. Increasing minimum wage yet again is further pandering so as to maintain power. Much of Ontario’s woes can be placed firmly at the feet… Read more »
jules
Guest
Darcy Neal you are right and that is what forced jobs to go overseas and they are not coming back. The more money that you want the more the prices go high and there is no win solution at all. Live below your means and you will survive. The standard of living is going to go down and this is one of the things that I do know. In order to compete with the third world well I said it we will be going down that path and it is all done by design by the global elite. Not by… Read more »
Melman
Guest
HONORING THE DEATH OF PETE SEEGER WHO ALWAYS FOUGHT FOR THE LITTLE MAN we support this call your MP request …maybe this doesn’t belong here but without Freedom given to us from our Veterans there would be no Cornwall Free News StellaTheFellaa PLEASE CALL OUR LOCAL MP GUY LAUZON THIS IS SHAMEFUL..NO EXCUSES!!! Veterans in Ottawa to fight service cuts across Canada Federal government closing 9 Veterans Affairs offices across the country Alban LeClair says he works with veterans in Prince Edward Island as a legion service volunteer. “I can’t help veterans without assistance of Veterans Affairs,” he said. “This… Read more »
Furtz
Member

@ garfield. Why do you guys keep trotting out the same old BS about the premiere being not elected? We elect MPs and MPPs. The parties elect their leaders. Even you should know this by now.

Max Score
Guest

Instead of having a minimum wage that does not work for anyone I would rather support a living wage that adjusts with the cost of living.

garfield
Guest

Bottom line…. logic, fiscal prudence and common sense convey Ontario’s minimum wage should be in line with other Canadian provinces, the U.S. and other jurisdictions of relevance to the Canadian economy. McWynne’s proposal goes beyond that and unfortunately shall not enhance nor benefit Ontario’s economy.

Max Score
Guest
I don’t think that it is fair to see a minimum wage earner living in a large city like Ottawa or Toronto be paid the same amount for doing the same job as those living in a smaller city like Cornwall. He or she is having to be payed low and pay out two to three times the amount for living expenses then take home the same amount as those where the cost of living is lower and have to budget harder because of where they choose to live. Is this fair? A living wage would help and be more… Read more »
Furtz
Member

It’s interesting to note that the construction and sales of luxury homes in Canada have been breaking records every year for the last three years. Same for the sales of luxury cars and trucks. At the same time, those in the bottom third of the economic scale (the working poor) are losing their homes and depending on food-banks in record numbers. Our trickle-up economy is working exactly as it was designed to do.

jules
Guest
People cannot live on minimum wage here in Ottawa, Toronto and other large cities since the cost of living is astronomical. Cornwall is not that cheap so don’t think it is easy to live in Cornwall either. The government doesn’t care at all about the people and only cares about stealing our money and giving it to their friends which are the banksters as in gangsters which they are including the big corporations, the thieving senators and I can go on and on. In order for a family to live ok or kind of ok in Ottawa you need to… Read more »
jules
Guest
Yes Furtz the economy was designed to keep people very poor and soon there will be no more middle class at all. Those homes will be left empty and the same thing with the cars because people who are earning small wages will not be able to buy anything at all. It is designed by the global elite and like I say banksters as in gangsters and the corporations it is all very true indeed and even more than that and if I could speak freely I would tell you even more but you have to research. I have researched… Read more »
420
Guest

The writer of this column is improving. Congrats E.V.!

Darwinism works in Canada. The rich and strong work harder and are generally smarter than the rest of the populace. They also vote. If one is earning minimum wage it reflects their skill set. Improving one’s skill set allows one to excel. Life has always been hard, but has never been easier for the average contributor to the economy. Get educated. Take a chance. Stop the whining or go on welfare and move to French Harlem.
.
God bless Stephen Harper.

jules
Guest
420 do you know how many well educated young people coming out of university with no work and all they have to show for that degree are debts. Education isn’t everything. The lady that helped my daughter land that job’s daughter has a degree and is working in the office at that supermarket on little pay and no benefits and is married and has a child. My daughter is doing a lot of replacing and no benefits and she gets the evening shift and is there now. She is only working 4 hours and sometimes an extra half hour and… Read more »
420
Guest
Jules, Jules, Jules! . I have a feeling that the closest you have been to an economist is Jim Kramer on the tube. . The kids that have debt should perhaps have taken a trade. Darwin suggests that it is not chance, but persistence that allows one to evolve. Persistence includes choosing an education with an outcome that doesn’t lead to McDonald’s. Anyone in debt and working at McDonald’s shot too high for themselves and they are paying for it. We can’t have a society of all teachers, engineers, doctors, and civil servants. Far too many are allowed into post-secondary… Read more »
jules
Guest
420 here is another one. You said that people are not all cut out for university and that part we agree but there are people who are mighty intelligent and come from families who have no money to send their kids through school. These students have to borrow and come out owing like as if they have a mortgage on their heads for the rest of their lives and can’t get out of it. I used to write to an American lady in her early fifties at the time who took a law degree that she didn’t want but to… Read more »
Dominic
Guest
The only thing the last minimum wage increase did was increase the cost of living for people who worked to get above minimum wage and send our call center jobs overseas. The prices across the border are lower for the same products we have here because they earn less per hour and they are taxed less. Keep in mind with lower taxes you have less social benefits like health care. Yes, you wait five hours, but at the end of that 5 hours you don’t get handed a bill. Simple fact is we are in a global economy and we… Read more »
420
Guest

Jules

Those same people made a choice. I worked and went to school at the same time. I had no choice. I dug dirt and did whatever I had to do at the time. I was away for many years.

David Oldham
Guest
Like water, minimum wage must seek its own level within a economic structure. When government tampers with wages it disturbs the structure and in the final analysis is the only body to benefit by immediately increasing tax revenues. The problem is not how much we make but rather how much is left over after taxation. After accounting for federal, provincial and municipal taxes and factoring in HST and seemingly endless fees (taxes) personally I end up hanging onto only 30 cents out of each dollar. Our purchasing power has eroded slowly and steadily since the mid seventies and long story… Read more »
David Oldham
Guest

Jules we all work for the government ! Taxation takes the lions share. Why ? We demand too much from our system and support far too many non contributors not to mention billions of dollars that we do not have being given away to assist the struggling poor of the world. Perhaps we should help ourselves first ? Just a thought .

David Oldham
Guest

@Garfield …nice to read commonsense comments based on reality rather than sarcasm or sense of entitlement !

Furtz
Member

Yes David. As long as all the money continues to trickle up to wealthiest 20%, all is good. It costs more and more to be filthy-rich these days. Luxury cars and yachts and houses aren’t getting any cheaper.

Roger
Guest
Several years ago I was told by a friend that he earned $25.00 an hour sweeping floors at Domtar. I would assume that that was THEIR minimum wage at the time. Was that true? I don’t know. He also said he was not ALLOWED to do anything else when not busy, by the union? At the height of the automotive industry crisis, one news report stated that labourers at one of the car factories earned as high as $75.00 an hour. I found that hard to believe. One of my cousins, a high school drop out, earns $45.00 an hour… Read more »
Eric
Guest
Furtz, someone has to make those luxury items, that translates into jobs. Someone has to monitor and reinvest some of that top 20%, which translates into jobs. Someone has to provide maintenance on those items, which translates into jobs. Gas, food, insurance, amny industries. If some one was able to stay in school, work 2 jobs, save and invest, why should they give it away to the people who don’t work? Just like all this language crap ( which did not start in 1759, 1841, 1867 or the Trudeau years) we will continue to have lower paid earners and higher.… Read more »
Furtz
Member

@ Eric. I’m talking about the WORKING poor right now. The people who get up every morning and go to work every day, and don’t make enough to live on. The number of people building Lamborghinies and Rolex watches is pretty limited.

hailey Brown
Member
Jules and 420, You need to remember in North America education is nothing more than a business. There is no form of education that actually provides for what we need tomorrow, hell how can they predict what is needed for education when they have no idea how the market will end today. Education in Canada keeps kids simple minded and broke so they can begin life in debt. How can we make things better, first of all we have to take things into our own hands “ vive la revolution” , Why do we pay taxes to the environmental portion… Read more »
jules
Guest
Mr. Oldham you too hit the nail on the head. We have to support our own people. I for one do not believe in welfare unless someone is ill mentally or physically or both. I believe in work. My daughter only gets 4 1/2 hours here and there and sometimes 5 and has only done an 8 hour shift once since she was there and at minimum wage but still better than a hand out and she sure does pay taxes. Yes you sure are right when you said that we all work for the government in one way or… Read more »
jules
Guest
420 there are people who can go to school and work at the same time and one is our friend Robert’s daughters but not everyone can do that especially if they are into medicine and such things. My daughter was thinking about going back to college and when she saw all the people that she worked with with high degrees and no job in their line of study she declined. My husband just came in a while ago telling me more news about Sears and the situation is very grim. Honestly I never tell any of you lies – I… Read more »
jules
Guest
Dominic you too are absolutely right and yes greed has caused this indeed. My son has a friend who works for Bell Canada in the call centre and he is a supervisor and is sent all over the world. He just came back from Peru lately. He makes at least $25. or more per hour. Call Centres are all going overseas. My daughter was offered to go into the call centre where she used to work for either $12./ hour or $13 I can’t remember which salary but it was where Kanata is and that would take 2 buses and… Read more »
jules
Guest
Hayley you said it well – education is a business here in N. America and it is to keep the teachers employed. Without young people going to universities and colleges and getting into massive debts then teachers would be unemployed. Education today sucks where the young people (a large majority) cannot read nor write and it is all done by design. There is nothing to turn to and even my daughter asks how is she going to be able to live if it were not for us being alive and helping her out. Things are not good at all and… Read more »
David Oldham
Guest

In the last ten years or so the minimum wage has increased $3.40 to its current $10.25. Now, at the stroke of a pen, some are suggesting the need to increase the minimum wage to $14.00. Right. So we are expecting to essentially repeat history, only in record breaking time. So my question is, do we expect the same or a different outcome ?

Eric
Guest
Furtz, this article from 2007 showed “some” improvement for the working poor. A major stumbling block then as now, high tax. Not to sound like a conservative radio show, but there is a poverty industry out there that does not want change, only talk about it for more funding. We have issues with immigrants having above average unemployment rates as well. Perhaps government could hire another level of government to work on fixing immigrants working sooner and tax issues as a start. I also think we are seeing some of the drain from the family unification program of a few… Read more »
hailey Brown
Member

Someone will have to confirm my math

The wage increase in 2010 was about 17% ($8.75 to $10.25) the cost of buying goods according to stats Canada has only risen by 8.1 % between 2009 and 2013. Probably due the cost of doing business combined with wages increasing.

It appears that we now have $11.00 as the minimum wage according to other news sites. This means wages have increased 25.17% since 2009, while the cost index has only risen 1% ($0.01) in 2013.

Am I missing something or are they really playing the people of Ontario as complete fools

jules
Guest
Hayley just mentioned what I was going to say that Winnie in TO raised the minimum wage to $11./per but that won’t change anything except that the living will go higher like your food, utilities and things of that nature. Housing will go to a certain point since we are in a bubble until it bursts like what happened in the US. Australia is in the same predicament. If you look at Vancouver B.C. a simple bungalow even in the drug infested areas is well over a million dollars and their minimum wage is only a little over $8./hour. Only… Read more »
Furtz
Member

Don’t worry about the math Hailey. Rest assured that workers making $11/hr will still be living in poverty.
All is good,

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