CUPE calls for rapid increase to minimum wage

EDMONTON – A union representing 35,000 Alberta workers is calling on the Alberta government to move quickly on its pledge to increase the minimum wage to $15/hour.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees, Alberta Division (CUPE Alberta), is participating in the consultation of the public and stakeholders regarding Alberta’s minimum wage.

CUPE Alberta President Marle Roberts says the government should increase the minimum wage by $2.40/hour to $12.60 on October 1st followed by $0.48 cent increases every six months.

“No Albertan should have to work 40 hours per week and still live below the poverty line,” said Roberts. “Our minimum wage has not kept up with inflation and we need rapid action to catch up quickly.”

Roberts said the special, lower rate for alcohol servers should also be eliminated quickly, noting that nine out of thirteen Canadian jurisdictions have no such distinction.

“A two-tiered minimum wage structure leads to and encourages confusion and abuse,” said Roberts. “There is no rational argument to pay one group of workers less than another.”


Contact: Marle Roberts
LA/lg cope#491