BC Minimum Wage Increases to $15.20 an hour; BBOT Speaks to CBC on Rising Costs of Labour

As of June 1, 2021 the minimum wage in BC has risen to $15.20 per hour for almost all workers in the province.  The minimum wage of liquor server workers, which had been lower to recognize an ability to earn tips as income, has now been replaced with the normal minimum wage.

Minimum wage applies regardless of how employees are paid – hourly, salary, commission or on an incentive basis. If an employee’s wage is below minimum wage for the hours they worked, the employer must top up their payment so that it’s equal to minimum wage.

The minimum wage has increased nearly 35% in the past four years, a rate which the Burnaby Board of Trade cautioned as too fast and could lead to labour cost inflation across the wage scale.  This is in addition to increases in payroll taxes, a failure by the province to fix soaring property tax bills, and the imposition of a wholly new tax on payroll — the Employer Health Tax.  BBOT President & CEO Paul Holden spoke to CBC’s Gloria Mackarenko to discuss the impacts on labour cost increases to small businesses.

Listen to the interview here (at 5:58 on the recording)

When the provincial government was developing its minimum wage increase schedule, the Burnaby Board of Trade released it’s “Getting to 15” report, which advocated for increases to be done in a slow, steady and predictable manner, and calling for consideration and mitigation of the potential ‘knock-on’ inflationary effects all along the wage scale.    Read our report here.