All you need to know about Ontario's minimum wage hike
Ontario minimum wage workers can officially begin raking in their $14 an hour this Tuesday, on the first non-holiday since the province put the increase into effect.
All general minimum wage workers are now entitled to $14 per hour in Ontario, up from the previous rate of $11.60. That number is slated to climb even higher next year, with a $15 minimum wage coming into effect on Jan. 1, 2019.
This year’s wage increase does not mean an immediate bump if you’re making more than the new minimum.
Liquor servers, hunting and fishing guides, homeworkers and students under 18 will also see their minimum wage rates rise, although not to the full $14 rate. Instead, their pay has been bumped up as follows:
- Non-adult students: $13.15, up from $10.90
- Liquor servers: $12.20, up from $10.10
- Hunting and fishing guides: $70 or $140 (depending on hours worked), up from $58 or $116
- Homeworkers: $15.40, up from $12.80
Individuals in those roles will also receive a second pay bump on Jan. 1, 2019.
Other changes include:
- three weeks of paid vacation for all employees who have been with a company for five years
- up to 104 weeks of leave for the death of a child from any cause
- up to 104 weeks of leave for the crime-related disappearance of a child
- personal emergency leave extended to include employees at companies with fewer than 50 employees
- personal emergency leave now allowed for employees experiencing or under threat of sexual or domestic violence
- employers cannot request a sick note for personal emergency leave
- employees entitled to 10 personal emergency leave days per year (including two paid days)
- family medical leave time increased to up to 27 weeks in a 52-week period
The wage hike is expected to hit small businesses the hardest, with many owners saying they’ll have to cut staff, reduce hours or increase prices to absorb the additional cost. The Financial Accountability Office of Ontario, an independent watchdog in the province, has estimated the move will result in approximately 50,000 job losses.