Campaign for $15 wage presses Ontario Liberals ahead of summer recess

News May 29, 2017 by Mike Adler York Guardian

Campaigners for $15 and Fairness are pressing Ontario Liberals to commit to a $15 minimum wage and other labour reforms before Queen’s Park starts its summer recess.

At a meeting last week, Deena Ladd of Toronto’s Workers’ Action Centre urged activists, many of whom built support for $15-an-hour wages over the past two years, to make every moment count before this Thursday, June 1.

That’s the day Ontario’s legislature breaks for the summer, and it’s the last chance for Kathleen Wynne’s government to introduce reforms before the fall.

“This is our fight. These are our lives,” Ladd told volunteers and campaigners at the Jane Street Hub in Weston.

“If we leave this hanging, we’ll be battling business for the next three months.”

She was optimistic Liberals would announce some changes this week. “They see $15 as key to their support in 2018.”

Released last week, the final report of the province’s Changing Workplaces Review has 173 recommendations on changing labour laws, brought on by two years of study.

Ladd said the report doesn’t agree with $15 and Fairness on everything - the government’s advisors “chickened out”, for example, by not supporting a minimum number of paid sick days for employees - but it gives activists fighting for workers in poorly-paid and precarious jobs a huge opportunity.

The campaigners planned to meet as many MPPs as possible before Thursday, and to release on Tuesday a statement of support from 150 faith leaders.

Business groups, meanwhile, have made clear their opposition to a $15 wage and other campaign goals.

In a May 23 statement, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce and the Keep Ontario Working coalition called for a “comprehensive economic impact analysis” of each change to protect Ontario’s jobs against “unintended consequences” of the report recommendations.

“As employers, our members believe that increasing the minimum wage and fully implementing these recommendations would have the perverse effect of discouraging investment and eliminating jobs,” the groups said.

Last week, Patty Coates of the Ontario Federation of Labour, acknowledged the Chamber says changes the campaign is pushing for would be a job killer, “but they have been wrong again and again.”


Campaign for $15 wage presses Ontario Liberals ahead of summer recess

Chamber of Commerce warns of "unintended consequences"

News May 29, 2017 by Mike Adler York Guardian

Campaigners for $15 and Fairness are pressing Ontario Liberals to commit to a $15 minimum wage and other labour reforms before Queen’s Park starts its summer recess.

At a meeting last week, Deena Ladd of Toronto’s Workers’ Action Centre urged activists, many of whom built support for $15-an-hour wages over the past two years, to make every moment count before this Thursday, June 1.

That’s the day Ontario’s legislature breaks for the summer, and it’s the last chance for Kathleen Wynne’s government to introduce reforms before the fall.

“This is our fight. These are our lives,” Ladd told volunteers and campaigners at the Jane Street Hub in Weston.

“If we leave this hanging, we’ll be battling business for the next three months.”

She was optimistic Liberals would announce some changes this week. “They see $15 as key to their support in 2018.”

Released last week, the final report of the province’s Changing Workplaces Review has 173 recommendations on changing labour laws, brought on by two years of study.

Ladd said the report doesn’t agree with $15 and Fairness on everything - the government’s advisors “chickened out”, for example, by not supporting a minimum number of paid sick days for employees - but it gives activists fighting for workers in poorly-paid and precarious jobs a huge opportunity.

The campaigners planned to meet as many MPPs as possible before Thursday, and to release on Tuesday a statement of support from 150 faith leaders.

Business groups, meanwhile, have made clear their opposition to a $15 wage and other campaign goals.

In a May 23 statement, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce and the Keep Ontario Working coalition called for a “comprehensive economic impact analysis” of each change to protect Ontario’s jobs against “unintended consequences” of the report recommendations.

“As employers, our members believe that increasing the minimum wage and fully implementing these recommendations would have the perverse effect of discouraging investment and eliminating jobs,” the groups said.

Last week, Patty Coates of the Ontario Federation of Labour, acknowledged the Chamber says changes the campaign is pushing for would be a job killer, “but they have been wrong again and again.”


Campaign for $15 wage presses Ontario Liberals ahead of summer recess

Chamber of Commerce warns of "unintended consequences"

News May 29, 2017 by Mike Adler York Guardian

Campaigners for $15 and Fairness are pressing Ontario Liberals to commit to a $15 minimum wage and other labour reforms before Queen’s Park starts its summer recess.

At a meeting last week, Deena Ladd of Toronto’s Workers’ Action Centre urged activists, many of whom built support for $15-an-hour wages over the past two years, to make every moment count before this Thursday, June 1.

That’s the day Ontario’s legislature breaks for the summer, and it’s the last chance for Kathleen Wynne’s government to introduce reforms before the fall.

“This is our fight. These are our lives,” Ladd told volunteers and campaigners at the Jane Street Hub in Weston.

“If we leave this hanging, we’ll be battling business for the next three months.”

She was optimistic Liberals would announce some changes this week. “They see $15 as key to their support in 2018.”

Released last week, the final report of the province’s Changing Workplaces Review has 173 recommendations on changing labour laws, brought on by two years of study.

Ladd said the report doesn’t agree with $15 and Fairness on everything - the government’s advisors “chickened out”, for example, by not supporting a minimum number of paid sick days for employees - but it gives activists fighting for workers in poorly-paid and precarious jobs a huge opportunity.

The campaigners planned to meet as many MPPs as possible before Thursday, and to release on Tuesday a statement of support from 150 faith leaders.

Business groups, meanwhile, have made clear their opposition to a $15 wage and other campaign goals.

In a May 23 statement, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce and the Keep Ontario Working coalition called for a “comprehensive economic impact analysis” of each change to protect Ontario’s jobs against “unintended consequences” of the report recommendations.

“As employers, our members believe that increasing the minimum wage and fully implementing these recommendations would have the perverse effect of discouraging investment and eliminating jobs,” the groups said.

Last week, Patty Coates of the Ontario Federation of Labour, acknowledged the Chamber says changes the campaign is pushing for would be a job killer, “but they have been wrong again and again.”