Minimum wage debate rages on

Hike to $11 will solidify Ontario’s spot as one of highest rates in Canada
By Liz Foster
|Canadian Labour Reporter|Last Updated: 02/10/2014

 A teenager flipping burgers at the local fast food joint — this is the image most often evoked by organizations arguing about a raise in minimum wage.

For the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB), this teen is the typical minimum wage earner. He lives at home with his parents, is upgrading his education and will only work a minimum wage job for a fixed period of time. While a wage hike will have no lasting effect on his life, it will have a significant impact on his employer.

For Unifor — the largest union in the private sector representing more than 300,000 Canadian workers — this teen is a small part of the bigger picture. He is now competing for minimum wage jobs with university graduates and adults who are moving back home out of necessity when they fail to find a job in their field.