SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Roger Strukhoff, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Glenn Rossman, Cynthia Dunlop

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Minimum Wage Increase to $11 Would Lock Workers into Poverty

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 01/28/14 -- A day after the recommendations of the Minimum Wage Advisory Panel were released, there is speculation that the Ontario government will increase the minimum wage to $11.

While this increase would recognize that wages have been frozen for four years, it still locks Ontario workers 16% below the poverty line.

"For Premier Kathleen Wynne to be a "jobs premier" she must seize the opportunity to build the foundation for decent wages that bring workers out of poverty and support a healthy economy," said Navjeet Sidhu, from Social Planning Toronto. "Instead of entrenching poverty wages with legislation, we are calling on Premier Wynne to take leadership for good jobs and increased consumer spending by implementing a $14 minimum wage."

The Campaign to Raise the Minimum Wage is calling for a minimum wage of $14 an hour, increased annually by the CPI, to bring workers 10% above the poverty line. The Campaign estimates that a $14 minimum wage would inject at least $5 billion annually into Ontario's economy, stimulating consumer demand, generating economic activity and creating jobs.

The Campaign to Raise the Minimum Wage is coordinated by ACORN, Freedom 90, Mennonite New Life Centre, OCAP, Ontario Campaign 2000, Parkdale Community Legal Services, Put Food in the Budget, Social Planning Toronto, Toronto and York Region Labour Council and Workers' Action Centre.

Contacts:
Campaign to Raise the Minimum Wage
Sonia Singh
416-531-0778 x 221 (office) or 647-235-6912 (cell)

Campaign to Raise the Minimum Wage
Deena Ladd
416-836-2379 (cell)

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