Many small businesses have reduced hiring plans; and unfortunately, that includes opportunities for young workers. Will the province’s plan to reach a $15 minimum wage by 2018 do more harm than good?
It's on the books and coming into effect: Alberta's minimum wage will be $15 an hour by October 1, 2018.
As you may know, CFIB has been very active raising awareness of the impacts with this government and the general public. CFIB issued myth busting research on the impact to jobs, who really earns minimum wage, and that 1/3 small business owners effectively make less than $15 minimum wage themselves. We also met one-on-one with the Minster of Labour Christina Gray presenting over 4500 of your petitions.
Although we have not yet been successful on halting the minimum wage before it reaches $15/hr, this emphasizes that now more than ever we need your stories.
While Alberta did lower the small business tax rate to 2% in 2017, this does not even come close to offseting the increasing burden.
Preliminary results from our most recent survey suggest that a $15 minimum wage is not the answer. The large majority, a whopping 90 percent of Alberta small business owners believe the province needs to freeze the minimum wage at the current level of $13.60/hr to preserve jobs.
CFIB survey data shows that 48% of business owners have already reduced or eliminate plans to hire new workers as Alberta moves to a $15/hr minimum wage. Additionally, 44% have reduced plans to hire young workers. The negative consequences that minimum wage hikes have on economy are significant.
As you can guess, we are not giving up. Thanks to your help, we are equipped with significant survey results which show the hardship a rapid minimum wage increase to $15/hr will bring to Alberta’s economy and small business community. Your comments are also particularly helpful in delivering a strong message to the provincial government! As the fight continues, be prepared for more updates.