Minimum wages rise this fall

Seasonal agricultural workers harvest celery in Ontario’s Holland Marsh. Photo by Glenn Lowson.

Five provinces are set to raise minimum wages this fall with British Columbia leading the way.  As of September 15, the minimum wage in B.C is $11.35/hour, up from $10.85/ hour.  The provincial NDP government has indicated its intent to form a Fair Wages Commission that would study future increases. The terms of reference have been modified to plan for a minimum wage of $15/hour by 2021. 


“Most growers can absorb that increase over a period of time,” says Fred Steele, chair of the 500-plus member British Columbia Fruit Growers’ Association.  “It’s going to be a time release capsule in contrast to what Ontario is trying to do all at once.”


Ontario’s minimum wage rises to $11.60/hour on October 1 with plans to go to $14/hour on January 1, 2018 and $15/hour on January 1, 2019. That legislation has not yet been ratified. 


A patchwork quilt of labour rates now exists across Canadian provinces, ranging from a low of $10.85/hour in New Brunswick to $13.60 in Alberta.



Hourly Rate

Effective Date

British Columbia


Sept. 15, 2017



Oct. 1, 2017



Oct. 1, 2017



Oct. 1, 2015



Oct. 1, 2017



May 1, 2017

New Brunswick


April 1, 2017

Nova Scotia


April 1, 2017

Prince Edward Island


April 1, 2017



Oct. 1, 2017








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Publish date: 
Tuesday, September 12, 2017

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