Job losses confirm minimum wage hike a job-killer


SIMCOE – The impacts of Ontario’s new labour legislation are already having a negative effect on the economy.

Statistics Canada January Labour Force Survey reaffirms the findings of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce report released only days ago, which found low labour force participation, low business confidence, and declining small business revenue. This is the highest monthly decline in jobs since 2009, and took place in the same month this government implemented its job-killing minimum wage.

Statistics Canada reports that massive job losses are disproportionately hitting youth, who experienced job loss at a rate of 6.5 times higher than the rest of the population, and women, who saw their employment drop at 4 times the rate of Ontario’s men.

“Kathleen Wynne was warned by experts that her overnight minimum wage hike would put our most vulnerable people out of work. She was warned, and she ignored them purely for political purposes,” said Ontario PC Economic Development Critic Monte McNaughton. “Now we see more young people out of a job.”

Locally, Barrett issued numerous news releases and columns warning of the potential impacts of increasing the minimum wage too quickly. He also was concerned about impacts on low wage earners, youth and the disadvantaged –  the people the legislation was supposedly helping.

“I heard stories of people being laid off prior to Dec. 31 because business owners knew what was coming,” Barrett said. “In one case, the person laid off was disadvantaged. Business owners warned us of this during testimony before the Finance Committee, but the government chose to ignore it.”

“Over one third of people in our province have stopped looking for work, while opportunity has been stagnant outside of Toronto and Ottawa since the recession,” said McNaughton. “Kathleen Wynne’s only objective with her minimum wage hike was to hold onto power and as a result, things are getting worse.”


For more information, contact MPP Toby Barrett at 519-428-0446 or