Letter: Andrew Weaver statement on Fair Wages Commission report

Greens wants permanent commission to keep politics out minimum-wage talks

Editor,

The B.C. Green Party proposed the Fair Wages Commission with the goal of depoliticizing the process of setting minimum wage in B.C.

We support raising the minimum wage: ultimately, all British Columbians should have livable incomes. We know our economy will be made even stronger when people can afford to live where they work, have adequate income and time to spend with their families and on their health, and have disposable income to help fuel local businesses.

I’m glad a key recommendation of the report is to establish a permanent commission to keep politics out of minimum-wage discussions, and I urge the government to commit to this recommendation.

This commission should be empowered with the explicit mandate of analyzing the impacts of minimum-wage increases and recommending changes going forward based on evidence.

It is essential we ensure changes to the minimum wage are done within the broader context of the changing economy, and in a responsible way that minimizes adverse effects while maximizing benefits to British Columbians.

As we move towards the goal of livable incomes for all British Columbians, we must put evidence first and proactively address the changes on the horizon. We look forward to working further with the government to explore innovative solutions, such as basic income, to the growing issues of precarious work and technological automation.

Andrew Weaver

B.C. Green Party leader

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