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Minimum wage going up this fall

Increase of 3.9 per cent will bring new hourly rate to $17.20 per hour.

Ontario’s minimum wage is going up.

The province announced on March 28 that minimum wage would go up to $17.20 per hour, an increase of 3.9 per cent, starting this fall.

“Under the leadership of Premier Ford, our government is helping nearly one million workers earn more money for themselves and their families,” Labour Minister David Piccini said in a provincial news release.

“We are providing businesses with certainty and predictability by announcing this annual wage increase six months in advance, while also helping families offset the rising cost of living, so that Ontario continues to be the best place to live, work and raise a family.”

In effect as of Oct. 1, the changes come under the Employment Standards Act, which is based on the Ontario Consumer Price Index (CPI). The CPI is a measure of inflation that represents changes in prices experienced by Ontario consumers, the province explained.

With the increase, a worker making the general minimum wage and working 40 hours per week will see an annual pay increase of up to $1,355

The province reported 935,600 workers earning at or below $17.20 per hour in 2023.

Roughly 35 per cent of workers at or below the current general minimum wage of $17.20 per hour are in retail trade and 24 per cent are in accommodation and food services.

Once the changes come into effect in October, Ontario will have the second highest minimum wage in Canada, following British Columbia, which sits at $17.40 per hour.