The Parti Québécois pledged on Sunday to raise the minimum wage in Quebec to $18 an hour during a possible first term.
“No person working full time should live in poverty in Quebec,” exclaimed PQ leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon, presenting his party’s commitments to equality at work.
“With the current minimum wage at $14.25 an hour, that works out to about $27,000 a year. However, in Quebec, the viable income threshold is $30,000, probably even more today with inflation. The government of Quebec has a responsibility, vis-à-vis approximately 200,000 minimum wage workers in Quebec, to give them the means to reach at least the threshold of viable income,” he added.
In addition, the PQ, noting that there is still a gap of 8.1% between the hourly wages of men and women, wants to force companies to respect the rules of pay equity between the two sexes.
“We set ourselves the objective, within 5 years, of reducing to 5% or less, because we will take it if it is less, the gap between men and women”, promised Mr. St-Pierre Plamondon.
According to the plan presented by the party, recalcitrant employers in terms of equity could receive significant fines. The Commission for standards, equity in health and safety at work (CNESST) would be responsible for ensuring the application of the rules, thanks to an increase in its powers, its budget and its staff.