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The Economic Effects of Increasing British Columbia's Minimum Wage

Type: Research Studies
Date Published: January 7, 2009
Research Topics:
Labour Market

Minimum wages have long been the subject of considerable attention and debate. The controversy surrounding minimum wages arises from the tension between well-intentioned efforts to increase incomes for lower-income workers and the significant negative economic costs associated with increasing minimum wages. This controversy is also fuelled by a general misunderstanding of what kinds of workers actually earn the minimum wage.

The purpose of this study is to provide British Columbians, and indeed all Canadians, with an up-to-date account of these realities and other economic costs of the minimum wage. The study also aims to empirically assess the employment losses associated with increasing the minimum wage in British Columbia. Together, these analyses will help inform the public and policy makers about the impacts of increasing minimum wages.

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