The BC Federation of Labour did some cheeky Christmas campaigning today in favour of raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour.
Volunteers, some who dressed as the Grinch, handed out lumps of coal – actually black jelly beans – to demonstrate the mean-spiritness of the government.
President Irene Lanzinger: “We think it’s kind of mean-spirited and cold-hearted of the government to let hundreds and thousands of people work full time and live in poverty. And at Christmas time and holiday time when we are spending money and spending time with family and friends, it’s important for us to remember the people who live in poverty.”
Lanzinger says while raising the wage is an important first step, there are other things that must be done to reduce poverty in B.C.
“There are other things you need to do, like a social housing plan, like raising welfare rates and raising the minimum wage. It is a piece of solving the issue of poverty, it’s not the only answer.”
B.C.’s minimum wage – at $10.45 per hour – is the second lowest in the country after New Brunswick.