For or against $15 an hour

Kelowna residents are being asked how a minimum wage increase would impact them.

The Fair Wage Commission is coming to Kelowna Tuesday, and seven other locations across B.C., to better advise the government on how to move towards a $15 an hour minimum wage.

“The major task at hand is how soon the minimum wage should be raised to $15 an hour and in what kind of increments this should occur,” said Marjorie Griffin Cohen, chair of the commission.

Starting at 1 p.m., the public is invited to voice their opinions at the Sandman Hotel & Suites.

“No one working full-time in British Columbia should be living beneath the poverty line,” said Labour Minister Harry Bains. “We’re going lift up B.C.’s lowest paid workers to ensure no one is forced to work two jobs just to make ends meet.”

Cohen said they hope to get a better sense of how both employers and employees experience minimum wage.

“The goal is to inform us about these people’s own experience with living with less than $15 an hour, but also we want to hear what employers have to say about how wages should increase and what it means for them when wages increase,” she said.

Cohen added that there are five groups of people who do not receive the straight minimum wage and they are hoping to hear from them in Kelowna.

These groups include piece rate farm workers, liquor servers, live in care workers, custodial live in care takers of apartment buildings and live in camp counsellors.

The commission has been directed to work with economists, trade unions, the technology sector, small businesses, youth and others from all regions of the province to put forward a plan to bridge the gap between the minimum and living wage in B.C.

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