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Statistics Canada: Percentage of Canadian Workers Earning Minimum Wage Has Doubled Since 1998

New data from Statistics Canada upends right-wing stereotypes about minimum wage workers

September 13, 2019

Welcome to the new economy.

A new study quietly released by Statistics Canada finds that between 1998 and 2018, the percentage of Canadians with minimum wage has doubled, with one-in-three minimum wage workers also holding postsecondary degrees.

The data stands in stark contrast to the narratives pushed by right-wing think tanks and other business groups opposed to minimum wage increases who falsely claim the majority of minimum wage workers are teens working at mom and pop shops.

Statistics Canada

According to Statistics Canada’s data, in 1998, 5.2% of all Canadian workers had minimum wage jobs. Twenty years later in 2018, the most recent year for which data is available, that percentage doubled to 10.4%.

That rise wasn’t steady either — in 2017-2018, the share of minimum wage workers rose from 6.4% to 10.4%.

Statistics Canada

According to Statistics Canada, that spike came from a rapid increase in minimum wage workers in Ontario — Canada’s most populous and wealthiest province — where nearly 15% of the workforce depends on the minimum wage.

The data also proves minimum wage workers in 2018 are not low-skilled teens.

Nearly half (47.7%) of Canada’s minimum wage workers are over the age of 25. And a little over one-third (34.9%) had a post-secondary diploma or above.

There has also been an explosion of minimum wage jobs at large companies.

From 1998 to 2018, the proportion of Canada’s large firm employees earning the minimum wage more than doubled from 3.4% to 9.4%.

Meanwhile, the share at medium-sized firms rose from 4.8% to 9.7%, and it rose from 9.7% to 14.2% at small firms.

Statistics Canada

Statistics Canada commented: “These observations point to a potential erosion of the large-firm wage premium over time.

During this erosion, however, Canada’s largest corporations continued to gobble up assets. As PressProgress reported, the most powerful 0.8% of Canada’s corporations classified as multinational enterprises controlled two-thirds of all assets in 2016, the most recent year for which data is available. 



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‘Proud to Be White’: Conservative Candidate Resigns After Secret Anti-Immigrant Facebook Account Discovered

Conservative candidate in Manitoba shared anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim posts and declared he’s ‘proud to be white’

September 12, 2019

A Winnipeg-area candidate running for Andrew Scheer’s Conservatives has stepped down following the discovery of the candidate’s secret Facebook account which contained “discriminatory social media posts.”

Cameron Ogilvie’s since-deleted bio on the Conservative Party website notes that “Cameron has a love for people of all ethnic backgrounds” and “loves learning about different cultures.”

But Facebook postings newly unearthed by PressProgress show Ogilvie often shared content on anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim themes.

In fact, one posting from the former candidate while he…