NDP leader John Horgan is promising to “give British Columbians a raise” by raising the province’s minimum wage to $15 by the end of his first term as premier.
Horgan made the announcement at a party conference in Kamloops Sunday.
“Minimum wage is no longer something earned just by teenagers in their first jobs,” Horgan said. “Students, parents, seniors, new Canadians in every part of the economy are paid minimum wage.”
In May, Premier Christy Clark announced a 40-cent top-up to her government’s minimum wage formula, bringing it to $10.85 effective Sept. 15. The B.C. Liberal government’s cost-of-living formula called for a 10-cent increase this fall.
Clark said her government will add another 30 cents to the next scheduled increase in September 2017. Assuming another 10-cent cost of living increase, the wage would be $11.25, which Clark said would give B.C. the third highest rate in Canada.
The B.C. formula discounts the minimum wage by $1.25 for restaurant and pub servers, to reflect the income they receive from tips.
The B.C. Federation of Labour immediately issued a statement Sunday congratulating Horgan for backing their long-running campaign to move the minimum wage to $15 an hour.