Winnipeg Police Board not fulfilling it’s mandate

Submission to the Standing Policy Committee on Protection, Community Services and Parks made October 2, 2019

By Bronwyn Dobchuck-Land

Work for minimum wage in Manitoba? We want to talk to you!

For Immediate Release (Winnipeg):

People who work at minimum wage jobs are being sought for a new study about the lived experience of earning a minimum wage. The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives – Manitoba office is launching a new research project today to focus on the human experience of earning a minimum wage.

“We want to learn what people working for minimum wage think about their wage – is it at the appropriate level? What effect does working for minimum wage have on their lives” says researcher Ellen Smirl. Participation is confidential and anonymous. Participants receive a $25 cash honourarium for their participation.  Interested participants are asked to contact the study via email this confidential email address: minwage@policyalternatives.ca

This study will also document aspirations of minimum wage workers, level of satisfaction with their current job and level of interest in further education and / or different work.  The study will probe for match of current job with level of education to test what’s found in the literature – many workers cannot find decent work that matches their education. The study will include a literature review and a review of trends in minimum wage compared to the cost of living and the poverty line in Manitoba. The study has received ethics approval from the University of Winnipeg’s Human Research Ethics Board.

This study seeks to talk with racialized workers in particular. We will also focus on gathering data from workers in Winnipeg, Brandon and Thompson. The study will interview 50 workers, the findings will be analyzed, summarized and compiled in a peer reviewed final report for public launch and presentation to government and civil society in Spring 2020. The qualitative aspect of the study is being conducted by Ellen Smirl, Community Researcher at CCPA Manitoba. Jesse Hajer, faculty at the University of Manitoba in Economics and Labour Studies is leading the quantitative analysis. Student researchers from the University of Manitoba are also involved in the research project.

In 2017 the province of Manitoba passed The Minimum Wage Indexation Act, which indexed the $11/ hour minimum wage to the rate of inflation. The change takes place every October 1st.

About the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) is a non-profit charitable research institute active Nationally since 1980 and in Manitoba since 1997. www.policyalternatives.ca

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Austerity, round two

By Jesse Hajer

The sky will not fall with a higher minimum wage

By Chris Rigaux and Tanya Andrusieczko

First published in the Winnipeg Free Press September 23, 2019

September 10th’s election results were disappointing for progressive Manitobans who were looking for a decisive shift towards economic justice. We face four more years of austerity, cutbacks, and crumbs for the working class. The Progressive Conservatives were clear during the campaign that raising the minimum wage to a living wage is not their priority, and they intend to keep Manitoba in its shameful position of having the second-lowest minimum wage in the country.  At a stingy $11.35/hour, due to increase by only 30 cents in October, this is a poverty wage that traps minimum-wage workers in low-wage work.

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