Premier Christy Clark has increased BC’s minimum wage, just two days after she was sworn into office.
Clark announced on Wednesday, March 16 that the minimum wage will increase in three stages to $10.25 by May 1, 2012. As well, the training wage is being eliminated and a special minimum wage for liquor servers will be phased in.
The general minimum wage will rise from $8 an hour to $8.75 on May 1, 2011, then to $9.50 on November 1, 2011 and $10.25 on May 1, 2012.
As of May 1, 2011, the training wage is eliminated and all hourly-paid employees will be entitled to the general minimum wage regardless of how long they have been in the paid labour force.
“Raising the minimum wage and eliminating the training wage is a fair and reasonable step forward in putting families first and building our economy,” said Clark in a statement. “This increase could mean more than $4,000 additional dollars annually for a full-time employee, providing more support to BC workers and the families who depend on them.”
Businesses told the government they needed time to adjust to increases in the minimum wage, Clark also said. “We’re pleased we’ve been able to provide that certainty to them through three predictable stages.”
A special minimum wage for liquor servers will also be phased in, beginning May 1, 2011. It is modelled on existing regulations in Ontario for employees who serve liquor directly to customers or guests in licensed premises as a regular part of their work.
Wages for liquor servers will increase to $8.50 an hour starting May 1, 2011, then to $8.75 on November 1, 2011 and $9 on May 1, 2012.