Mishka Balsom, CEO of the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce (GNCC), issued the following statement in response to the Government of Ontario’s announcement that it would increase minimum wage to $16.65 an hour on October 1st:
“Businesses seek predictability on minimum wages, but we also seek a better approach to poverty. A failure to provide public goods cannot and should not be borne by the private sector alone. We should be aware of what drives up the cost of living, and it is, in large part, inadequate services such as transit or safe and affordable childcare, or the rising cost of housing.
“Minimum wages do not tackle these problems. When 40% of minimum wage earners work in retail and 25% in accommodation and food service, increased wages in those industries will drive inflation up further. Increasing wages creates an inflationary carousel where workers are no better off despite the numbers on their paycheques going up.”