NDP commits to raising minimum wage in B.C. to $15 per hour by 2021

VICTORIA — The B.C. government says it’s planning to increase the minimum wage in the province to $15 an hour by 2021.

Labour Minister Harry Bains says a fair wages commission will be established to plan how to raise the rate without hurting businesses.

A 50-cent increase announced by the previous Liberal government was already slated to bring the wage to $11.35 per hour as of Sept. 15.

Bains says that increase will go ahead as planned, benefiting about 94,000 minimum-wage workers.

Alberta will be the first province to offer $15 per hour when the rate increases next year, while Ontario plans to reach that rate in 2019.

The NDP had campaigned to increase the minimum wage in B.C. to $15 per hour, and in forming government, agreed with the Green party to set up a commission that would oversee regular rate reviews.

British Columbia has seen five increases to the minimum wage since 2011 after it was frozen at $8 for a decade.

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