Nova Scotia is set to increase its minimum wage to $15.20 per hour beginning April 1, 2024. This decision comes after recommendations from the Minimum Wage Review Committee, which were subsequently accepted by the government.
The new wage rate represents a 4.7 percent increase from the April 2023 rate. This adjustment is aligned with the formula proposed by the Committee, which involves modifying the wage rate based on the national consumer price index plus an additional one percentage point from the previous year’s rate.
Minister Balser acknowledged the difficulties faced by both business owners and workers in the province over the past year. Expressing gratitude to the Committee, Balser emphasized the importance of their role in providing insights from both employers and employees, ensuring a balanced approach to the wage increase.
The Minimum Wage Review Committee, featuring equal representation from employees and employers, submitted its 2023 report to the Minister on December 11.
Some quick facts highlight the broader context of this decision:
- The Minimum Wage Review Committee is mandated under the Labour Standards Code to annually review the minimum wage in Nova Scotia.
- The minimum wage previously saw an increase to $15 per hour on October 1, 2023.
- Approximately six percent of workers, translating to around 26,200 individuals, earned minimum wage in Nova Scotia from April 2022 to March 2023. Most of these workers were employed in the retail trade and food and accommodation industries.
This wage increase marks a significant step in addressing the economic challenges faced by the lowest-paid workers in the province, reflecting the government’s commitment to ensure fair compensation in line with the rising cost of living.