Common Front for Social Justice

January 21, 2009
News release
For immediate publication

Moncton- ''We consider the proposed increase to the Minimum Wage as a small step in the right direction''- Linda McCausltin, co-chair of the Common Front for Social Justice.

The NB Government has announced two increases to the Minimum Wage: a $0.25 increase on April 1 2009 and a another of $0.25 on September 1, 2009. Right now, NB has the lowest minimum wage in all of Canada. Today PEI has a $8.00 an hour Minimum Wage.

Presently, Newfoundland and Labrador has a minimum wage of $8.50 that will go up to $9.00 in July 2009, to $9.50 in January 2010 and then to $10.00 in July 2010 Nova Scotia's minimum wage will go up to $8.60 in April 2009, then increase to $8.20 in April 2010 and to $9.65 in October 2010.

“We have been pushing for a number of years to have our Minimum wage increased and that these increases be set at specific dates. Today's announcement is a partial answer to our demand.” says Ms MacCausltin.

With the increase in April 2009, workers will be making $16,640 per year instead of $16,120 - an increase of $520.00 per year which translates in an increase of only $10.00 per month.

With the increase of September 2009, they will be making $17,160 per year, again a difference of $10 per month from April 2009.

Even with the 2009 increases, workers will still be under the poverty line.

The Poverty Line for 2007 for one individual living in a community of 30,000 to 99,999 was $18,544. With the April increase, this increase means the worker will still be $1904 below the poverty line and the September increase that person will still be $1,384 under the poverty line.

“All across the country, provincial governments have recognized the injustice in having citizens working and receiving a revenue that keeps them in poverty. New Brunswick has to make the same realization and take the proper steps right now to rectify the situation” concludes Ms MacCausltin

For information
Linda MacCausltin- 855-7086, John Gagnon- 548-9776 (co-chairs)
Jean-Claude Basque - 862-9182 (coordinator)