Wednesday, March 10, 2010

"not a chance in Hell"....

The attendance here pretty much sums up a couple of issues... there is no support anywhere for a 2-tier wage system other than a few restaurant owners and the other issue is that Committee hearings are just a false front for Governments to give the impression they're "looking into" the matters at hand when they are really judging "voter" reaction but getting paid to do so (and the new MLA's at the same rate as the experienced ones)... bottom line here is there is "not a chance in Hell" that PEI will adopt a 2-tier wage system and I agree....
Business down on 2-tier wage in western P.E.I.
Not appropriate for rural areas, says group
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
CBC News
About a dozen people attended the meeting. (Brendan Elliott/CBC)
The West Prince Chamber of Commerce has come out against a two-tier minimum wage for P.E.I., unlike business groups in other parts of the province.
The government is considering whether setting a higher minimum wage for experienced workers is a good idea. The committee has heard support for the idea from businesses in other parts of the province, but that was not the experience in O'Leary Tuesday.
"Surprisingly enough, our business organization is against the thoughts of having two-tiered minimum wage," John Lane, past-president of the West Prince Chamber of Commerce, told the MLAs.
Lane said the chamber surveyed its 100 members and got about 25 responses back. None of them supported a two-tier wage.
While the government has stressed the idea is meant to reward experienced workers, there has been a lot of discussion about the restaurant sector, and how perhaps tip-earning wait staff do not need to be paid as much as others.
Lane said that model doesn't work in rural P.E.I. He pointed out urban centres have more people eating and drinking at restaurants, and so servers earn more in tips. In rural areas that traffic just isn't there.
"If you're instilling a minimum wage policy that is suitable to an urban area such as Charlottetown, it may not be suitable for the Sourises, or the Tignishss or the Montagues or the Morells of the world," he said.
"I think you've got to be very careful when you start looking at these policies, that they are not suited for a few big businesses in Charlottetown that will save a few dollars and to the detriment of the rural communities."
Extra duties, no tips
Debbie vanBuskirk brought more direct experience to the discussion. She has been waitressing in North Cape for 23 years.
VanBuskirk told the committee she has always made minimum wage, and she cautioned the MLAs not to get fooled into thinking her tips more than make up for the low wage.
"In the morning we have to vacuum, stock the fridge, get ready for the day. No tips there: $8.40," she said.
"At night we clean the fridge, microwave, sweep the floors, all for $8.40. No tips there."
The committee will continue its public hearings from Islanders Wednesday morning in Montague and Thursday in Charlottetown.


Anonymous said...

Disagree with your point of view Tim, as the logic doesn't hold.

For a single tier minimum wage to hold true that means all minimum wage earners are equal; or that all jobs which are at the minimum wage level are undertaken by people of equal abilities.

that is incorrect. As an employer who pays beyond minimum wage, I am well aware that an entry level person or a first time wage earner simply have neither the experience for as someone who has been on the job in that position, nor in some cases the necessary life skills as an older person.

That is the reason for a second tier - to provide some market differentiation between these two groups.

and there is no discussion to my mind on suppressing the less experienced entry level or younger worker - simply recognizing the added value to the more experienced or older worker.

Joe said...

I disagree with your logic Anonymous.

If you're an employer, you have the choice to pay based on experience. In fact, this is standard across many higher paying professions.

The employers in most of these minimum wage cases don't care about the experience, they only care about the profit motive.

It should be the employer's imperative, not the government's to realize the added value of experienced workers.