Federal minimum wage rising to $15.55 per hour in April

Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) has announced that the federal minimum wage will increase from $15 to $15.55 per hour on April 1, 2022.

The federal minimum wage only applies to those working in federally-regulated industries, such as banks, postal services, interprovincial transportation and federal Crown corporations. For employees working in industries that are not regulated by the federal government, the provincial minimum wage applies.

ESDC says the 55-cent minimum wage increase reflects the 3.4 per cent increase in the annual average consumer price index from 2021, as reported by Statistics Canada.

In provinces and territories that have a higher minimum wage than the federal rate, the higher wage will apply. Currently, that only applies to Nunavut, which has a minimum wage of $16 per hour. Yukon is also increasing its minimum wage to $15.70 per hour on April 1.

Other provinces introducing higher minimum wages on April 1 include P.E.I., New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia. Ontario hiked its minimum wage to $15 per hour on Jan. 1 while Quebec’s minimum wage will go up to $14.25 on May 1.

However, advocates say these increases aren’t enough to account for the cost of living in most communities. Living Wage Canada says wages need to be at least $20.52 per hour in Vancouver, $18.60 in Calgary, $22.08 in Toronto and $18.60 in Ottawa for working families to cover basic expenses.  

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