I’ve heard concerns across the country about the minimum wage eventually going up to $15 an hour or that possibility depending on the province in which you reside.
In Ontario, it will eventually rise 32 per cent. In Alberta, it’s also going up to $15, but it is being phased in over a longer period of time.
The concern is the small operator who is right now making a living, but not make as good a living as that person would like. I guess that could be said about any of us, but in the case of the small business people, they’re working hard, they’re working smart and making it work.
All of a sudden, if they’ve got several employees, their wages might jump from, say, $12 to $15. If it’s a young person just learning the ropes who gets that wage hike, the the mid-manager already working around the $15-an-hour mark will also want a raise, let’s say to $18. What doesn’t get mentioned very often is the domino effect.
Businesses can raise prices and you hope people understand that costs have gone up and you’d like to see the operator be able to pass on some of those additional costs.
Unlike other business decisions, this wasn’t the operator’s idea to raise the minimum wage. That operator woke up and suddenly, the rules had changed. That doesn’t make this wrong, but it has come very quickly, especially in Ontario.
It also means that the employees would get the raise will also be paying more across the board due to rising prices, so it remains to be seen how beneficial the wage hike will be if prices go up on everyday items.
It seems as if there employees will have hours cut as a result of the minimum wage hike. If at a busy time, a business had three people on, with only two people working during less busy times, the business may try to go with two people during the busy time instead of three. It may not be a lost job, but a person might be getting 30 hours instead of 40.
There will be a ripple effect felt by both employers and employees.