Minimum Wage to Rise on April 1

Labour and Workforce Development (To Jan. 7)

February 15, 2010 1:15 PM

Nova Scotians will see the minimum wage increase to $9.20 on April 1. This is a 6.9 per cent increase from the current rate of $8.60.

The minimum wage for inexperienced workers, with less than three months' experience in the work for which they were hired, will rise to $8.70 an hour from $8.10 an hour.

According to the schedule approved in 2008, the next increase will occur on Oct. 1., resulting in a 4.8 per cent increase to $9.65 per hour.

"Raising the minimum wage at this time will help Nova Scotians support themselves and their families," said Labour and Workforce Development Minister Marilyn More.

"As a review committee pointed out, Nova Scotia fared better than most provinces during the global recession. A recovery is underway and minimum wage workers should share the benefits of Nova Scotia's comparatively strong economic performance."

In January 2008, a four-person committee recommended a series of minimum wage increases to April 1, 2011. In December 2009, after reviewing the economic climate and Nova Scotia's economic situation compared to other jurisdictions, the committee reaffirmed its original recommended schedule of wage increases.

"I'd like to thank the committee for their continuing hard work and balanced recommendations, as well as, the groups and individuals who took the time to provide comments on this topic," said Ms. More.

By October, a full-time employee earning minimum wage will be within reach of the projected low income cut off for a single person. The low income cut off represents the threshold where people are devoting a larger than average percentage of their income to the necessities of food, shelter, and clothing.

These recommendations are in line with Nova Scotia's ongoing Poverty Reduction Strategy that was put in place in 2009. The strategy highlights the need for people to find work and be rewarded for it.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     Nova Scotians will see the minimum wage increase to $9.20 on

April 1. This is a 6.9 per cent increase from the current rate of

$8.60.

     Labour and Workforce Development Minister Marilyn More says

raising the minimum wage will help Nova Scotians support

themselves and their families.

     The next minimum wage increase will be October 1st.

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Media Contact: Brian Taylor
              Labour and Workforce Development
              902-424-0281
              E-mail: taylorbk@gov.ns.ca