Mission Chamber of Commerce president David Sawatzky has voiced concerns over the provincial government’s recent announcement on increases to the minimum wage, calling on the government to align increases to the Consumer Price Index to protect B.C small businesses.
“We support wage increases to keep up with the cost of living. However, the rate of the increases and timelines presented by the government will present significant challenges for our smaller businesses,” Sawatzky said.
Chambers from around the province have previously called for minimum wage increases to be linked to the Consumer Price Index, to bring stability and predictability to these increases and protect B.C. businesses from the fallout of sudden, unexpected hikes.
“Predictability and certainty are what’s on our members’ minds,” said Val Litwin, president and CEO of the BC Chamber of Commerce. “While front-loading the minimum wage increase will cause challenges for some businesses, the four-year timeline – with projected increases – will help businesses plan and incorporate those costs into their budgets.”
While Sawatzky does not believe the small business community will be as easily able to plan for the increases recommended for June 2018, the four-year timeline should give businesses the necessary time to adjust.