April 15, 2010
As of Mar. 31, the minimum wage in Ontario has increased 75 cents an hour. The provincial government announced that the new hourly rate will be $10.25, up from $9.50.

The rate for students under the age of 18, working no more than 28 hours per week, or during a school holiday, has gone from $8.90 per hour to $9.60 per hour.

The rate hike moves Ontario to the top of the minimum rate scale in Canada.

This is the seventh increase in Ontario since 2004.The province of Ontario started implementing annual increases early in 2003, raising the general minimum wage from $6.85 in 2004 to $9.50 in 2009.  

“Phasing in these increases balances the needs of hard working families with the needs of small businesses that create jobs,” states a press release from the province.

The province lists the major industries employing minimum wage earners as agriculture, accommodation, food and retail.

Last year, business leaders representing small enterprises urged Premier Dalton McGuinty to reconsider scheduled increases in the minimum wage. They said the increases could result in reduced hiring.