Too little consultation on minimum wage hike


Sir: According to the opinion articles that I have seen over the past weeks regarding the increase in minimum wage, reaction to Bill 148 has upset Premier Kathleen Wynne, Labour Minister Kevin Flynn and other government officials. Some are calling employers bullies, and how you (government) are upset with the employer not following legislation.

The way I see it, the shoe is on the other foot. The government should now understand how the employers feel, bullied with how minimum was pushed onto the all businesses.

I really don’t believe that employers are upset on the increase itself, they are upset on how it was implemented – with no cost analysis done to see the effects the increase would have on small and large businesses; no guidance from government to the employers whatsoever. Instead, it’s “let’s go ahead with the plan, let’s see what happens.”

Yes, there were public meetings, selected businesses pleaded their case, but apparently government wasn’t listening … again.

Labour Minister Kevin Flynn, on the news stating that those people buying coffee would not mind paying a little more for their coffee knowing that they would be helping those people living in poverty, don’t assume what everyone is thinking and that they would be OK with an increase in price. The answer isn’t always “raise the price” to the product that you sell and all will work out.

For those employees who did receive an increase in minimum wage, government thinks this will help them get out of poverty? In reality, the total gain the employee will receive is approximately $45 per week. Not much of an increase.

What happened to those employees that weren’t affected by minimum wage increase (because they make $14 to $16 per hour already)? Those people lose out as well. Prices go up but their wage didn’t go up, so, therefore, it is costing them more money to survive.

In the media last month, mothers who are very concerned with the increase in cost of minimum wage for day care will need to increase their cost up to $300 a month. One of the mothers explained to media that she can’t afford to pay her bills and pay for her children’s day-care costs.

In the same article, the child-care minister stated there is approximately $1.6 million dollars set aside to help with any day care adjustments that would be experienced.

Are there monies set aside for small business owners to help them with the increase in minimum wage? Or will employers be directed to just go online and do their own research and figure it out for themselves?

Businesses haven’t broken any laws by cutting back benefits, breaks and hours of work – government claims that they are being unfair. But what about government; aren’t they being unfair? Expecting employers to figure out how this increase will work out for them … with no assistance/guidance from government. I do believe in treating the employees fairly (no matter whom they work for) so again, what is a business to do?

This was all done for political gain and nothing more, everyone knows that.

What if the people of Ontario were the employers of the government (in theory we are because we voted them into office)? The employer has to deal with the increase in wage. How do you think the people of Ontario should handle the increase?

  • Absorb all the costs without increase prices of their product?
    • Absorb all the costs and increase the prices in hopes that your customers will accept the increase?
    • Close up their business for the costs are too great to absorb?
    • Cut back hours?
    • Lay off employees?
    • Cut back benefits and pension (if applicable)?

There will still be increases in hydro and all other utilities, groceries, gasoline, retail, property taxes, etc. with or without an increase in wages.

Al Holland





Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here