Did we do the right thing?

In another month or so the new minimum wage will kick in and we will see if the impact as stated by the Fraser Institute comes to play.

In another month or so the new minimum wage will kick in and we will see if the impact as stated by the Fraser Institute comes into play. We heard through telephone conference calls by the BC Chamber of Commerce with different segments of the small business community how they felt.

It is interesting to hear that in some areas adjustments to staffing and hiring are already happening. The Fraser Institute report tell us there was only about two per cent of the workforce that actually received the minimum wage, while the overwhelming majority earns more.  Fifteen separate academic studies in the last 30 years examined the impact of increases of the minimum wage on employment. Accordingly a 10 per cent increase in the minimum wage will decrease employment among young workers by between three and six per cent. It apparently affects those who were earning somewhere between the old and the new by an even greater loss of 4.5 to 20 per cent.

Now the new minimum wage to affect B.C. is a 28.1 per cent increase so that may have an even more profound effect. It is estimated there will be between 9,391 and 41,738 jobs lost with this increase on the overall workforce. The Fraser Institute says the effect for all teen- and youth- or entry-job workers will range between 26,097 and 52,194 jobs. That would leave about 11,000 jobs to be picked up by someone who is not a newcomer or first-time job seeker.

Minimum wage advocates claim higher minimum wages decrease poverty. According to a Labour Economics study published earlier this year, a 10 per cent increase in the minimum wage increases poverty rates by four to six per cent.

I am not sure if anyone has calculated what the difference in payroll deductions like EI, compensation, plus income tax will have on the take-home pay. I recall in my early working years I was so happy I received a 50-cent-an-hour raise, and at the end of the day my take home pay was $5 less at the end of the month with all the added deductions. So did we really do the right thing?

Walt Cobb is a freelance columnist for the Tribune. He is a former Liberal MLA, former Williams Lake mayor, and current president of the Williams Lake and District Chamber of Commerce.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A police pursuit ended with an arrest in Williams Lake on Highway 97 Sunday afternoon. (Facebook video screenshot)
Video catches police pursuit that ends with man kicked, punched in Williams Lake

A video of the arrest is getting widely shared on social media

Quesnel was hit with unseasonably October snowfall earlier this week. More is on the way on Sunday, Oct. 25 and Monday, Oct. 26, and Quesnel and North Cariboo are under a winter storm warning. (Cassidy Dankochik Photo - Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
“Hazardous” weather expected for Quesnel: Environment Canada

10-20 cm of snow and freezing rain are expected to start Sunday night

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan celebrates projected majority NDP government, but no deadline for $1,000 deposit

Premier-elect says majority government will allow him to tackle issues across all of B.C.

FILE – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets Premier John Horgan during a press conference at the BC Transit corporate office following an announcement about new investments to improve transit for citizens in the province while in Victoria on Thursday, July 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Trudeau congratulates Horgan on NDP’s election victory in British Columbia

Final count won’t be available for three weeks due to the record number of 525,000 ballots cast by mail

Comedic actor Seth Rogen, right, and business partner Evan Goldberg pose in this undated handout photo. When actor Seth Rogen was growing up and smoking cannabis in Vancouver, he recalls there was a constant cloud of shame around the substance that still lingers. Rogen is determined to change that. (Maarten de Boer ohoto)
Seth Rogen talks about fighting cannabis stigma, why pot should be as accepted as beer

‘I smoke weed all day and every day and have for 20 years’

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Provincial Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks at Provincial Green Party headquarters at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe in Victoria. (Arnold Lim / Black Press)
VIDEO: Furstenau leads BC Greens to win first riding outside of Vancouver Island

Sonia Furstenau became leader of BC Greens one week before snap election was called

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

NDP Leader John Horgan elbow bumps NDP candidate Coquitlam-Burke Mountain candidate Fin Donnelly following a seniors round table in Coquitlam, B.C., Tuesday, October 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan, NDP head for majority in B.C. election results

Record number of mail-in ballots may shift results

The Canadian border is pictured at the Peace Arch Canada/USA border crossing in Surrey, B.C. Friday, March 20, 2020. More than 4.6 million people have arrived in Canada since the border closed last March and fewer than one-quarter of them were ordered to quarantine while the rest were deemed “essential” and exempted from quarantining. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Majority of international travellers since March deemed ‘essential’, avoid quarantine

As of Oct. 20, 3.5 million travellers had been deemed essential, and another 1.1 million were considered non-essential

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Most Read