April 1, 2010
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The minimum wage in New Brunswick will increase by 25 cents an hour today, rising to $8.50 per hour from $8.25 per hour.
This is the sixth increase since October 2006, when minimum wage was $6.70 per hour.
Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Donald Arseneault said this is a significant increase that will help New Brunswickers meet their needs and will significantly improve their quality of life.
"We will gradually increase the minimum wage to meet the needs of workers without negatively affecting the rights of employers," Arseneault said. "Our businesses must remain competitive, while offering workers fair wages. By raising the minimum wage in four steps over two years, we are remaining transparent to employers so that they can adjust their budget accordingly in preparation for future increases."
There are three more steps to come in order to reach the Atlantic average by Sept. 2011:
As of today, an individual working 40 hours a week will earn a minimum of $340 per week, which is a 27 per cent increase over the $268 per week earned for the same number of hours on minimum wage in October 2006.
The increases are in accordance with what was agreed upon in Overcoming Poverty Together: The New Brunswick Economic and Social Inclusion Plan. The plan is designed to reduce income poverty by 25 per cent and deep income poverty by 50 per cent in New Brunswick by 2015.
For more information on the minimum wage, paid public holidays, and the Employment Standards Act, contact the Employment Standards Branch of the Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour at 1-888-452-2687, or go online.
MEDIA CONTACT: Thomas Lizotte, communications, Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour, 506-444-3465.