B.C. liquor servers to get pay boost on par with general minimum wage increase

A server wears a face mask while cleaning a table on the patio at an Earls restaurant. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

The British Columbia government says the province’s lowest-paid workers, liquor servers, are getting a pay boost to match the general minimum wage that’s also set to increase in June.

Labour Minister Harry Bains says he’s proud to put an end to the discriminatory lower minimum wage for liquor servers, 80 per cent of whom are women.

The province says liquor servers earning minimum wage will make $15.20 an hour, up from $13.95, effective June 1.

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The general minimum wage is increasing by 60 cents from $14.60 an hour, and the minimum rates for live-in camp leaders and resident caretakers are also increasing.

Click to play video: 'Not everyone is on board with B.C. government’s plan to raise the minimum wage'
Not everyone is on board with B.C. government’s plan to raise the minimum wage

The province says future increases to the minimum wage, starting next year, will be based on the rate of inflation to provide predictability.

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Bains says in a statement many low-income workers have been essential during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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“Many of these low-income workers are the most vulnerable in workplaces, including young women as liquor servers and minorities in low-wage jobs. Raising the minimum wage will bring equity and fairness for workers.”

The province says the Fair Wages Commission recommended the $15.20 minimum wage in 2018, when B.C. had one of the lowest minimum wages in the country while being one of the most expensive provinces to live in.

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