EDMONTON, AB: The announced timeline by the NDP government to implement a dramatic increase to the minimum wage comes at a time when our economy can least afford it and puts employment with our most vulnerable at risk, the Wildrose Official Opposition said.
Labour Minister Christina Gray refused to release any type of economic analysis about the impact of the nearly 50 per cent hike or otherwise address the concerns of employers, entrepreneurs and workers afraid of the impact on job losses. In December, an internal government memo for the NDP government suggested this move could result in, “significant job losses.”
“Alberta just lost 44,000 full-time jobs in May. Combined with a series of other tax increases, this aggressive timeline comes at the wrong time as our economy continues to suffer,” Wildrose Leader Brian Jean said. “If the NDP stood on the side of working families, they would make sure their jobs would be protected. Without the government being upfront with Albertans about the full cost of this policy on our economy, they are taking a gamble with the livelihoods of businesses and the people they employ.”
With the added costs of NDP property tax hikes, an expensive new carbon tax and today’s announcement, businesses across the province are now worried about having to shut their doors altogether.
Wildrose Shadow Jobs Minister Grant Hunter said it shows a government that is not willing to listen and do all they can to protect jobs across the economy.
“We know the NDP are trying to help low income Albertans, but unfortunately their approach will only end up eliminating many needed jobs and exacerbate an already difficult jobs environment.” Hunter said. “It’s disappointing the NDP has consistently put ideology over doing what’s best for working families across the province.”