Alberta is planning to raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour by Oct. 1, 2018, a pledge that is honourable if measured by intent alone, that being to put more coin in people’s pockets, but while that may happen, the question is will there simply be less people carrying more cash than before?
Alberta actually hit its highest unemployment rate in 22 years in July and came in at 8.4 per cent in August, compared to 6.1 per cent a year earlier. In September, it was 8.5 per cent compared to 6.6 per cent for the same period in 2015.
In Calgary specifically, September’s unemployment rate was 9.5 per cent, up from nine per cent the month before.
It’s no secret that Alberta has been hit hard by falling oil prices. With the government promising to force feed a hefty price on carbon to the provinces, uncertainty over pipelines and a movement towards less dependence on oil, it isn’t likely things will change anytime soon in Alberta.
That’s the climate in which the Alberta government is phasing in the move to the highest minimum wage in the land (by today’s standards), a time when there is less of the disposable income that golf relies on available.
Alberta isn’t the only province talking about a $15 an hour minimum wage. The balloon has also been floated in Ontario, which has a different pressures affecting businesses and individuals such as ridiculously high housing prices in the Toronto area and sky-high hydro rates, to name a couple.
A rally in Montreal on the weekend called for $15 an hour as have similar gatherings in different parts of the country. You can read more here.
Meanwhile, the federal government stated in this story from CBC that it won’t get involved in any discussion about hiking the minimum wage.
Should we assume that the hike would benefit all current minimum wage workers, or will businesses cut back on staff in order to adjust their budgets once again as they have to deal with the other factors influencing their operations?
What do you think?
How would the golf industry be affected by a $15 an hour minimum wage if it was implemented? That’s the question in this week’s GNN Poll.
You can vote below or on the GNN home page and please feel free to expand your thoughts in the Comments section below.
What would be the effect of a $15 an hour minimum wage on the golf industry?
- It would mean less jobs and increased workload for those receiving it. (74%)
- It would enhance the lives of all minimum wage workers. (26%)