September 30, 2013
20 Cent Increase Leaves Manitoba Minimum Wage Still Far Short of Living Wage
WINNIPEG – With Manitoba’s minimum wage going up by 20 cents/hour tomorrow, new data shows minimum wage earners are not the stereotypical teenagers working for small businesses, said Kevin Rebeck, President of the Manitoba Federation of Labour (MFL).
“When we looked more closely at the numbers, we found that Manitoba’s minimum wage earners are not who most would expect,” said Rebeck. “Most work for big companies. Most are adults. Thousands are single parents.”
Manitoba’s minimum wage earners are profiled in Manitoba’s Minimum Wage by the Numbers (below), an updated statistical snapshot using the latest data from Statistics Canada. Released today, it shows:
“No one working full time should have to live in poverty,” said Rebeck. “A 20 cent increase in the minimum wage falls far short of what’s needed to bring Manitoba’s working poor to a living wage -.”
The MFL has been calling for a multi-year plan to raise the minimum wage to a living wage – enough to earn a decent standard of living. The MFL defines a living wage as 60% of the average wage in Manitoba. Based in current average earnings, a living wage would be $12.44/hour, $1.99/hour more than Manitoba’s new minimum wage rate.
For more information, please contact John Doyle (204-953-2562; 204-782-8465).
Manitoba’s Minimum Wage by the Numbers
Year in which Manitoba became the first province in Canada to adopt a minimum wage: 1918
Number of minimum wage earners in Manitoba: 38,600
Number of Manitobans earning just 10% more than minimum wage: 73,700
Percentage of Manitoba minimum wage earners who work for companies with more than 20 employees: 76
Percentage of Manitoba minimum wage earners who work for large companies with more than 100 employees: 55
Percentage of Manitoba minimum wage earners who work for large companies with more than 500 employees: 42
Percentage of minimum wage earners in Manitoba who are adults (more than 20 years old): 55
Percentage of Manitoba minimum wage earners who have been employed in the same job for more than 1 year: 49
Number of Manitoba single parents who earn minimum wage: 2,300
Percentage by which women workers are more likely to earn minimum wage in Manitoba: 38
Gap between Manitoba’s minimum wage and a living wage (defined as 60% of the average Manitoba wage): $1.99/hour
Cost of providing a benefit equivalent to this year’s 20 cent minimum wage hike by raising the Basic Personal Exemption for income taxes: $223 million
Data Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey and CANSIM table 281-0027.