Quebec's Minimum Wage Increase Takes Effect On May 1

The pay boost will impact nearly 300,000 workers.

MTL Blog, Associate Editor
​Canadian coins and banknotes.

Canadian coins and banknotes.

Minimum wage in Quebec is increasing by a dollar to $15.25 per hour as of May 1. The change will affect almost 300,000 workers in the province, including those who receive tips. But some say it's not enough.

The government announced this move in January as part of its plan to improve the standard of living for low-income earners. It will mean an extra $2,080 per year for a full-time worker who puts in 40 hours per week.

Employees who receive tips will see an increase in their base pay from $11.40 to $12.20 per hour, an increase of 80 cents.

Labour Minister Jean Boulet is calling Quebec's wage hike "A historic increase that will help employees better meet their needs while respecting companies' ability to pay."

However, a study by the Institut de recherche et d’informations socioéconomiques (IRIS) in 2022 shows that one in five Quebecers falls below the income threshold required to meet their basic needs. According to the report, a living wage in the current economy is at least $18 per hour, which is the minimum income needed for an individual to lead a dignified life and cover essential expenses.

The cost of living in Quebec has risen significantly due to inflation since the study, adding to the financial strain on low-income workers.

Quebec's minimum wage is the third highest in the country, behind British Columbia at $15.65 and Ontario at $15.50 per hour.

Sofia Misenheimer
MTL Blog, Associate Editor
Sofia Misenheimer is an award-winning writer, editor and former radio journalist with a passion for finding hidden gems in the city.