GFL Environmental becomes Niagara’s newest 'living wage' employer

·1 min read

GFL Environmental, which began its new contract earlier this month as Niagara’s newest waste management contract, is now also the region’s newest “living wage” employer.

The Niagara Poverty Reduction Network has announced GFL is a certified living wage employer.

In 2019, the living wage for Niagara, which estimates how much a worker needs to be paid to cover actual costs of living in the community, was calculated to be $18.12 per hour — now the starting wage as of the Oct. 19 contract.

Dave Viera, general manager of GFL Environmental, said the move reflects GFL commitment to fairly compensate employees for the work they do.

“A happy employee is a productive employee. We believe in paying fair; it is a hard job, and I am proud to be a part of Ontario’s fair living wage in Niagara.”

The company’s Niagara office in St. Catharines currently employs 50 full-time staff.

Given the difficult economic year it's been for many people across the region, the news that GFL would be increasing wages across the board to bring all its employees to a living wage is a great way to recognize the work GFL employees do on a daily basis, Viera said.

“What my folks do, it is such a hard job, and they should be paid well. It has been a tough year for everyone, so whatever we can do to help, we want to do,” he said.

GFL Environmental began its new contract with Niagara Region on Oct. 19 for residential solid waste and recycling collection in the municipalities of Grimsby, Lincoln, Pelham, Thorold, Wainfleet, and West Lincoln.

Bryan Levesque, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Grimsby Lincoln News