B.C. will raise its minimum wage to $10.45 in September, beginning a new index system that links the provinces’ minimum wage to the Consumer Price Index.
Jobs Minister Shirley Bond announced the wage will increase every September in fluctuation with the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which measures changes in the price level of a market basket of consumer goods and services purchased by households.
B.C.’s CPI was listed at 118.0 in January 2015, up from 117.1 in the same month of the previous year and from 117.8 in 2012, the last time the minimum wage was raised.
The CPI includes the cost of food, shelter, household operations and furnishings, clothing and footwear, transportation, health and personal care, recreation, education and reading and alcoholic beverages and tobacco products.
Bond also notes that if the rate of inflation were to go down, the province’s minimum wage would stay the same.
Today’s minimum wage is $10.25 an hour. The $0.20 increase also affects the minimum wage for servers, moving from $9 and hour to $9.20, and the daily rate for live-in home support workers and live-in camp leaders, as well as the monthly rates for resident caretakers and the farm worker piece rates (for harvesters of certain fruits and vegetables).
The annual minimum wage change will be announced in March of each year to be implemented on September 15 of the same year.
“Currently in B.C., people earning minimum wage represent 110,400 employees, or 5.9% of the paid workforce, below the national average of 7.2%,” the province of B.C. says in a press release.
Minister of Jobs, Shirley Bond notes that “raising the minimum wage allows B.C. to keep pace with minimum wages in the rest of Canada while maintaining our competitiveness. We remain focused on our plan to grow B.C.’s diverse economy to encourage investment that leads to high-paying, family supporting jobs.”
This announcement moves B.C. above Nova Scotia, Quebec, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador in the country’s list of highest minimum wages by province. Only Ontario ($11), Nunavut ($11) and Yukon ($10.72) will pay more per hour as of September.