Sept. 4, 2009
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The following statement was issued today by Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Donald Arseneault, in recognition of Labour Day, Sept. 7.
Labour Day is an opportunity to pay tribute to those whose past efforts have helped shape today's modern workplace.
Every year at this time, New Brunswickers and fellow workers around the globe take a well-deserved break from everyday routines. It is an occasion for us to remember the importance and dignity of work, and to restate our commitment to health and safety in the workplace.
Our workforce is the backbone of our goal to achieve a self-sufficient New Brunswick by 2026. Our population and its workers play a lead role in our Charter for Change.
We often speak of how we are blessed with resources in this province. Whether it is forestry or the knowledge industry, agriculture or value-added manufacturing, there is one common denominator, that which is often hailed as New Brunswick's greatest resource: its people.
We ask a great deal of New Brunswick workers. We ask them to be productive, diligent, resourceful, flexible. In return, we continue to work to advance their rights and well-being. We facilitate productive labour relations, along with a fair, safe, healthy, stable, co-operative and productive work environment.
Just days ago we announced an increase in the minimum wage to $8.25. It is the second minimum wage increase in the past six months, and the fifth since October 2006, when the minimum wage was $6.70 per hour.
We are proud of what we have accomplished so far, and we will continue to equip employees and employers with the skills they need to respond to emerging trends in the workplace, and to adapt to the ever-changing nature of the economy.
I also salute the many dedicated volunteers who are making a difference in our province. Their generosity continues to serve as an example and inspiration to others.
As we celebrate the final holiday of the summer, I ask all of you to take a moment to reflect on the character and spirit that make this province's workforce second to none. I wish all New Brunswickers a safe, enjoyable Labour Day weekend, and thank them for their continued efforts toward making New Brunswick the unique place it is today.