Rallying for $15 minimum wage

Protestors outside McDonald's at Dundurn & Main in Hamilton, April 15, 2015

(Updated) Protests are taking place today across Canada and in 40 other countries to demand a higher minimum wage.

Here in Hamilton, people protested at the McDonald’s on Dundurn & Main. Many of the rallies targeted McDonald’s. The company’s U.S. division recently announced a $1 pay raise but Fight For $15 says the raise does not apply to the 90 per cent of workers in franchises who make minimum wage.

Service Employees International Union executive vice-president Carol McDowell told CHCH News “It’s about a fair living wage in the U.S. for fast food workers. Corporate giants like McDonald’s should be paying a fair living wage.”

In Ontario the minimum wage is $11 an hour, but in Hamilton the cost of living is calculated at $14.95 cents an hour.

While some think a raise is a good thing, others believe increasing the minimum wage would increase the cost of living and dramatically affect small businesses.

Fight For $15 has also drawn attention politically. Federal NDP leader Tom Mulcair has proposed a $15 federal minimum wage. He says the NDP plan would start minimum wage at $12 an hour, rising to $15 by 2019. This would reverse the Liberal government’s 1996 decision to scrap the federal minimum wage.

Each province and territory decides their own ranging from $10, to $11 in Ontario.

8 COMMENTS

  1. Fight for $15 dollar minimum wage. Try living on government pension it works out to about $10 per hour if I’m lucky. People don’t realize when you ask for more the price of everything else goes up so your no better off than what you were. What we need is the government to put price freezing on food, gas, hydro etc. Then maybe we can live alittle better. If they get this I want I hike in my pension. What am I thinking I won’t get that the government wants me under their thumb.

  2. It’s unbelievable to think that peoples abilities to make ends meet or to get ahead slightly in this country by increasing the minimum wage to a respectable amount of $15/hr is because the cost of everything will NEED to increase to offset the increase in the minimum wage. When for years now companies have been pulling the wool over the eyes of consumers (like we don’t pay attention packaging) by REDUCING the quantity and weight of thousands of products (ie: a package of bacon has gone from 454gm to 375gm with NO price reduction). Yesterday I purchased the same salad from a fast food chain that I have for a very long time; the chicken breast that comes salad that has always been an acceptable quantity for a $10 salad is now HALF the size — no price change in the salad of course! I’d say the ‘offsetting’ has already taken place and it’s time to help the consumer (employees that are paid miminum wage) instead of taking advantage them/us!!! Step up Canada and do the right thing for once !!!!

  3. It is very frustrating to see what the top level of management of these major companies and organizations make for their annual salary and yet refuse to pay a decent wage to their front line staff who are the daily faces their clients see and help make their businesses successful. Ask a front line bank employee what their wages are, you will be disgusted to hear that these multi billion dollar corporations start them a little above the minimum wage ( usually $12.50/hr) and raises are based on performance which is fine, but they are usually no more than the cost of living regardless of how well you have performed…. And then look at what management makes, the ratio is unfair, even the Prime minister or the President of the United States, who have the responsibility of running a whole country, do not make anywhere near the salaries of these CEO’s

  4. If a McDonald’s burger-flipper wants more money, then why not go get educated and/or find a better paying job instead of complaining all the time!

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