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Welfare Reform on the Web (January 2010): Minimum Wage - overseas

Minimum wage increases as an anti-poverty policy in Ontario

A. Mascella, S. Teja and B.S. Thompson

Canadian Public Policy, vol. 35, 2009, p. 373-379

In 2004 the minimum wage in Ontario was increased for the first time in over nine years, with continued increases planned until 2010. According to the Ontario government, this is a key component of a larger strategy to reduce poverty in the province. This article presents evidence that the majority of workers benefiting from minimum wage increases do not belong to poor households. Simulation results are also presented which suggest that the planned increases in Ontario's minimum wage will lead to virtually no reduction in poverty levels.

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