Fair Workplaces and Better Jobs in Ottawa
$15 Minimum Wage Part of Plan to Help People Get Ahead Across Ontario
Today in Ottawa, Premier Kathleen Wynne visited the Art-Is-In Bakery to highlight how Ontario's plan for Fair Workplaces and Better Jobs will improve the lives of workers and families across the province.
Ontario is taking historic action to create more opportunity and security for workers through the proposed Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act. This includes raising the minimum wage to $14 per hour on January 1, 2018, and $15 per hour on January 1, 2019, followed by annual increases at the rate of inflation. The government's proposals would also ensure that part-time workers are paid the same hourly wage as full-time workers for doing the same job, make employee scheduling fairer and expand personal emergency leave so all employees receive at least 10 days per year, including two days of paid leave.
Over the past three years, Ontario's economy has outperformed all G7 countries in real GDP growth, and employment is up by 86,000 net new jobs over the past 12 months. Still, many workers are struggling to support their families on part-time, contract or minimum-wage work. To protect workers and ensure they are treated fairly, the government is updating labour and employment laws to address the changing nature of work.
Ontario will continue to work closely with businesses as these changes come into effect, so they can continue to succeed and keep the economy strong. The proposed changes will help businesses drive up productivity and retain talent, and will boost the economy by increasing workers' purchasing power.
Creating fair workplaces and better jobs across Ontario is part of our plan to grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.
- The Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act would also expand family leave, give employees the right to request a review of their wages if they believe they are not receiving equal pay, and mandate equal pay for temporary help agency employees doing the same job as permanent employees at their assigned company.
- More than a quarter of Ontario workers would receive a pay hike through the proposed increase to the minimum wage. Half of the employees in the province who earn less than $15 per hour are from the age of 25 to 64, and the majority are women.
- Studies show that a higher minimum wage reduces employee turnover, which increases business productivity.
- Ontario’s landmark package of proposals responds to the final report of the Changing Workplaces Review, the first-ever independent review of the Employment Standards Act, 2000 and Labour Relations Act, 1995.
“Whether you are supporting a family or are a recent graduate juggling two part-time jobs, you deserve what every worker in Ontario deserves — to be treated with decency and respect. We are raising the minimum wage and ensuring fair pay for part-time workers as part of our plan to give workers a real chance to get ahead. This will mean a better life for workers and their families.”
“When we launched the Changing Workplaces Review two years ago, we did so on the understanding that workplaces had changed. The legislation needed to change with it. We know that responsible change can ensure that every hard-working person in the province of Ontario has a chance to reach their full potential and share in the economic prosperity of this province.”
“In Ottawa West–Nepean and across the province these updates to our labour and employment laws will help support workers and their families while we continue to build the strongest economy in the country and create an environment in which all Ontarians have opportunities to succeed.”
“The situation that so many are facing, people who have jobs but still cannot live decently, is not acceptable for Ontario. We can do better and increasing the minimum wage is part of the solution.”
Nathalie Des Rosiers