Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour

Minimum wage will rise to Atlantic average by September 2011 (10/01/05)

NB 3

Jan. 5, 2010

FREDERICTON (CNB) - The minimum wage in New Brunswick will increase to meet the Atlantic average by Sept. 1, 2011, as part of a long-term plan announced today.

The minimum wage will increase in four steps:

Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Donald Arseneault said it is important to outline a long-term plan for increasing the minimum wage. Such a plan provides predictability for employers and more certainty for wage earners.

"We want employers to grow their businesses while providing a fair wage, which will enable employees to improve their standard of living," said Arseneault. "This balanced approach will continue to move us forward on our path to self-sufficiency and build a better future for New Brunswick."

The recommended increases will fulfil the provincial government's commitment to raise the minimum wage to the Atlantic average by Sept. 1, 2011, which is expected to reach $10 per hour.

"The Minimum Wage Board has indicated to the government that during upcoming meetings in 2010 the concept of a tip differential associated with the minimum wage, as well as the concept of a training wage for inexperienced workers, will be discussed," said Arseneault. "I would like to thank the members of the board for their continued work, and I look forward to their advice and recommendations on the above matters in 2010."

The increases reflect one of the provincial government's commitments in Overcoming Poverty Together: The New Brunswick's Economic and Social Inclusion Plan. This plan was adopted in November during the Final Forum on Poverty. The 50 participants represented the government, business and community sectors, together with residents who have experienced poverty.

Overcoming Poverty Together: The New Brunswick Economic and Social Inclusion Plan aims to reduce income poverty in the province by 25 per cent and deep income poverty by 50 per cent by 2015.

There are also planned increases to the minimum wage for counsellor and program staff at not-for-profit residential summer camps. The adjustments to the Minimum Wage for Counsellor and Program Staff at Residential Summer Camps Regulation under the Employment Standards Act will reflect the scheduled increases to the general minimum wage.

For more information on the minimum wage, paid public holidays, and the Employment Standards Act, contact the Employment Standards Branch, Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour, at 1-888-452-2687, or go to www.gnb.ca/labour.

10/01/05

MEDIA CONTACT: Lori-Jean Johnson, communications, Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour, 506-476-0542.

10/01/05