Canadian Pizza Magazine

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Manitoba budget stacks up costs for restaurants


May 7, 2015
By Canadian Pizza

May 7, 2015, Winnipeg, MB – Manitoba’s recent hourly minimum wage hike by 30 cents to $11 as of Oct. 1 will hurt jobs in Manitoba’s restaurant industry, particularly for young people, says Restaurants Canada.

“This is essentially a placeholder budget with no clear vision for the business community,” said Dwayne Marling, Restaurants Canada’s vice-pesident Manitoba-Saskatchewan, in a news release. “Raising labour costs at a time when the province’s restaurant industry is struggling is bad for business, bad for the economy, and bad for Manitobans.”

In 2014, Canada’s restaurant industry was the top job creator. However, Manitoba was one of only three provinces to actually lose jobs in the restaurant industry last year.

Labour costs continue to rise, the association said:

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  • From 2001 to 2015, Manitoba’s minimum wage will have climbed 76 per cent, which is 2.5 times the rate of inflation growth in that period.
  • The latest jump in minimum wage will cost the province’s restaurant industry $8.3 million a year, or $3,330 per restaurant.

“Restaurants already face intense cost pressures on all fronts,” Marling said. “Our members want to hire more Manitobans, but budgets like this make that hard. The government needs to step up with a strong plan and work with us, not against us.”

Manitoba’s $2-billion restaurant industry is one of the province’s largest economic and employment sectors. It directly employs more than 40,000 people in communities across Manitoba.