As of Dec. 1, Saskatchewan’s minimum wage will increase to $10 an hour.
The labour relations and workplace safety ministry announced on Monday that the decision to increase from $9.50 an hour to $10 an hour came following the government's yearly review of the minimum wage. It also results in an increase of the minimum call-out pay to $30.
Brian Martynook, CEO of the Moose Jaw and District Chamber of Commerce, said it won’t affect too many businesses very much because most businesses are already paying above minimum wage. However he said entry-level, unskilled workers such as students are making minimum wage and the news of an increase may result in the increase of prices.
“People say, ‘Oh great, everyone’s going to get an increase,’ but the other side of the coin is that means the expense of the business is going to go up,” said Martynook. “So there’s only certain avenues that an employer of business can do — either increase their prices or cut staff or cut their hours.”
He said the province is trying to stay competitive compared to the minimum wage of other provinces. The highest minimum wage in Canada is in Nunavut at $11 an hour and the lowest will be Alberta, which recently raised its minimum wage to $9.75 an hour.
For more information, see an upcoming edition of the Times-Herald.