Minimum wage increases by 15 cents in Nova Scotia

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Minimum wage increases by 15 cents in Nova Scotia

Nova Scotians earning minimum wage will be making a little bit more as of today. 

Overall, employees who make minimum wage are earning a total of 15 cents more per hour.

Experienced workers' hourly rates increases to $10.85, from $10.70. Inexperienced workers' pay goes up to $10.35, from $10.20.

Those so-called inexperienced rates can be applied to an employee who has only worked for an employer for less than three months and has less than three months total experience in the work he or she has been hired to do.

Not enough for a 'living wage'

On Saturday, a few people in downtown Halifax criticized the new minimum wage rate, saying it isn't high enough to make a meaningful difference in people's lives.

"Well, I don't think it's enough, if I believe what's been written about a living wage, that gives people their dignity," said Janice Comeau, who was visiting Halifax from Yarmouth, N.S.

"I think that is supposed to be...somewhere up there for $20 [an hour] to live in the city of Halifax? So this doesn't make the mark."

'That's something at least'

Claire Jansen-Faught and Dylan Leiper are from Toronto, but going to university and living in Halifax.

"I'm glad it's going up. I don't know if it's enough," said Jansen-Faught. "It never seems to be enough."

"Right now, that's something at least," added Leiper.

Atlantic Canada overview

The minimum wage has also increased in the rest of Atlantic Canada.

In Newfoundland and Labrador, the rate went up by 25 cents to $10.75 per hour, from $10.50. It will increase again, to $11 per hour on Oct. 1, 2017.

Prince Edward Island's minimum wage increased by 25 cents to $11.25 per hour, from $11.

New Brunswick's minimum wage jumped the most in Atlantic Canada, to $11 per hour, from $10.65  — 35 cent boost overall.

'A good start'

That's good news for Keegan O'Shea who was visiting Halifax from Miramichi, N.B. over the weekend.

"I mean, that's great," said O'Shea. "I work a minimum wage job myself so I think that's always nice to have a little more money, right?"

Brittany Matchett, also from Miramichi, said the minimum wage increase is "a step in the right direction."

"I think you need a lot more to see a difference, but it's a good attempt and a good start."