As of May 1, minimum wage earners are making an additional 75 cents per hour. But some say it's not nearly enough.
On May 1, the lowest-wage earners in the province got a slight pay bump. The Quebec minimum wage increased by 75 cents from $13.50 to $14.25 per hour. Labour Minister Jean Boulet says the increase will boost the purchasing power of the province's "most vulnerable workers." But Québec solidaire is rejecting the notion that the increase will do much to benefit residents.
The party is instead calling for an $18-per-hour minimum wage. It's also pushing back against the proposed $15 minimum wage.
"Honestly! We needed $15 five years ago, it's not a viable wage today," QS MNA Alexandre Leduc said in a May 1 statement.
"We've been talking about the cost of living crisis for months now. Does Mr. Boulet believe that people earning minimum wage are immune to the rise in all basic goods? I have the misfortune to tell him that this is not the case and that today, a decent and viable minimum wage is $18 per hour."
Leduc also pointed to companies like McDonald's that have hiked their lowest pay rate above the provincial standard.
There are already some minimum wage earners in the province who are making more than $14.25 per hour. On April 1, the federal government increased the minimum wage for Crown corporations and industries under its jurisdiction (banking, air travel, etc.) to $15.55 an hour.
Quebec's labour ministry said its May 1 wage increase will affect about 301,100 workers and amount to an annual increase of $1,406.25 for full-time employees.