“A $15 minimum wage is the right thing to do, and I’m happy that we’re nearly there thanks to those activists that built a movement.”
A Statement from Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath
Posted January 11th, 2018 on Niagara At Large
Queen’s Park, Toronto – Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath attended a rally this past Wednesday, January 10th in support of Tim Hortons workers who have faced retaliation from their employer in Cobourg. Horwath released the following statement:
“Millionaires are taking away minimum wage earners’ paid breaks, clawing back more of their paycheques for things like benefits that used to be covered, or calling workers contractors instead of employees to get out of providing some pay or benefits. There are workers, including staff at some Tim Hortons stores, taking home less pay this month than they did in December because employers are punishing them for the minimum wage increase. That’s just wrong. And workers need us all to have their backs, and amplify their voices.
I think of a mom working two or more jobs just so that her child doesn’t have to go to bed hungry. I think of all those who get up every morning and put in 40 honest hours or more at work every week, but still need to use the foodbank. A $15 minimum wage is the right thing to do, and I’m happy that we’re nearly there thanks to those activists that built a movement. I was proud to add my voice in April 2016, committing to the $15 minimum wage that people need to get by.
But it’s clearer than ever that that along with minimum wage increases, Queen’s Park also needs to close loopholes, and deliver better rights and protections for workers.
This past fall, the NDP proposed making it easier to form a union in order to negotiate things like paid breaks. We proposed preventing companies from calling an employee a contractor after three months on the job. We proposed ending exemptions that mean many people, including servers, can still be paid less than minimum wage. And we proposed five paid sick days for all workers, and an extra week of vacation after the first year of service, because we want work-life balance to get better for Ontario families, not worse.
I’m more committed to those changes than ever. It’s not too late. There’s hope for closing loopholes and protecting people’s rights better than Ontario does today.”
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“A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders