HALIFAX – On April 1, Nova Scotians earning the minimum wage will make more money.
For the fourth time since 2010, the province is increasing the minimum wage to keep up with the cost of living. This year, it will go up 1.5 per cent, to $10.30 an hour.
"Our government is delivering on its commitment to make life better for families in Nova Scotia," Labour and Advanced Education Minister Marilyn More said in a news release Thursday.
"Students, single parents and others rely on minimum-wage jobs to make ends meet. This increase will help low-income individuals and their families by making sure the minimum wage is fair."
The minimum wage for someone who has less than three months' experience is also increasing, to $9.80 an hour.
Minimum wage increases now occur annually and are based on the previous year's national Consumer Price Index.
"This is the fairest way for both the employer and the employees," said Steven MacPherson, general manager of Jack Astor's restaurant in Halifax and a member of the province's Minimum Wage Review Committee. "This way, employers know what the minimum wage will be when they're setting next year's budgets.
"As a business owner, your number one asset is your people. You have to make sure you take care of them, and you pay them fairly."
Nova Scotia has the highest minimum wage in Atlantic Canada and one of the highest in the country, behind Nunavut and the Yukon.
The Minimum Wage Review Committee, which includes representatives from business and labour, filed its report with the minister on Jan. 4. The report is on the department website.