Every year, each province and territory in Canada establishes its minimum wage amount, which is the lowest amount that a worker can legally be paid by an employer.
The minimum wage differs across the country, with some provinces allowing higher wages than others. Minimum wages are also established and modified in different ways by province or territory. For instance, it may be based on inflation, average wage rates, and other economic factors.
If you live and work in Manitoba, what minimum wage can you expect when you apply for a job?
Minimum Wage Explained
Minimum wage is the lowest amount that employers can legally compensate their employees for work performed. In Canada, the first minimum wage rates were established in the early 20th century.
Back then, minimum wage applied mainly to women and children. In Manitoba specifically, minimum wage legislation was introduced in 1918.
The purpose behind minimum wage is to reduce the poverty rate and alleviate issues of income inequality.
What’s The Minimum Wage In Manitoba?
As of 2021, the minimum wage in Manitoba is $11.90, up from $11.65 in 2020. That’s among the lowest in Canada, with only New Brunswick and Saskatchewan having lower minimum wages at $11.70 and $11.45, respectively.
All employees in Manitoba must earn at least minimum wage as per the law, unless they are excluded for various reasons or aren’t covered by provincial employment standards.
Are There Minimum Wage Exceptions In Manitoba?
There are exceptions to minimum wages paid to certain groups of workers. Let’s take a look at different demographics to see how minimum wage might affect them.
Students are not exempt from minimum wage, though there are some restrictions on the type of work they’re allowed to conduct and how many hours they can work if they are under the age of 18.
There are also rules surrounding young people between the ages of 13 to 15 years. In this age group, workers will require the “Young Worker Readiness Certificate” to lawfully commence work in Manitoba.
The minimum wage standards in the construction industry are different from other industries. Generally speaking, the minimum amount that workers in this industry get paid is much higher than the general minimum wage paid out to other workers.
The minimum wage schedule differs among different sectors within the construction industry. The Construction Industry Wages Act has established minimum wages for the majority of workers in the construction industry.
For workers in residential construction, the minimum wage falls under The Employment Standards Code, which is currently $11.90 an hour in most industries. Employees working in the industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) or Heavy construction sectors have a different wage schedule. Depending on the type of job, the minimum wage will differ.
Those in the ICI sector are paid a much higher minimum wage compared to regular construction workers. For instance, a Boilermaker earns a minimum of $33.40 per hour, which falls under the ICI sector. A Mobile Crane Operator, which falls under the Heavy construction sector, earns a minimum of $25.25.
Room And Board
Employers with workers who live on the premises can deduct the cost of accommodations and meals from their wages, as long as the employees actually get their meals and occupy the rooms on site. That said, the deductions can’t bring the workers’ wages below minimum wage in a pay period by more than $1 for every meal and $7 a week for the room.
Commission Based Workers
Employees who are paid by commissions or incentives, such as salespeople, must be paid at least minimum wage over every pay period. When an employee hasn’t made at least the minimum wage in each pay period, their employers must top them up accordingly.
Generally speaking, the following groups may be excluded from minimum wage rules:
- Domestic employees who work less than 12 hours per week
- Workers being trained in a provincial or federal training program
- Temporary persons appointed under The Elections Act, such as election officials or enumerators
Can any deductions be made to employee wages? Yes, however, there are specific rules surrounding this topic. Generally speaking, employers can only make deductions from wages under the following circumstances:
- Where it’s required by law
- To compensate for cash advances or errors in payroll
- For something for that workers agree to pay and is of a direct benefit to them, such as a course or tools that the worker may find useful outside of work
- For the cost of room and board
- For photo radar or red light camera tickets
- Employers may deduct the minimum amount payable if employees give written consent to do so.
There are certain things that employers cannot deduct from their employees’ wages, including the following:
- Cost to cash cheques
- Cost of damage to company property
- Cost of lost, stolen, or damaged products, tools, equipment, or bad service
- Cost of inventory shortages
- Cost of safety equipment
- Cost of uniforms
Minimum Work Hours In Manitoba
Employees can be compensated if they are scheduled to work more than 3 hours in a shift and are sent home early without having actually performed the work, or who are allowed to work less than their scheduled 3 hours.
Generally speaking, employees are entitled to report 3 hours of work and get paid accordingly unless the employer schedules a shorter shift. That said, employees must still be paid 3 hours or the length of time they worked — whichever of the two is longer — if they’re not informed of the number of hours of their shift in advance.
Further, employees are assured that they will be paid a minimum amount if their scheduled shift is cancelled or shortened by their employer, or if they’re called in to report for work with no notice. If employees are asked to go home early, their employers will still have to allow reporting of pay. But if an employee asks to leave work early, the employer only has to pay for the actual number of hours the employee worked.
Minimum Wage And Overtime In Manitoba
The standard shift is generally 8 hours in a day, and the standard work week consists of 40 hours worked. Any hours worked over this threshold is considered overtime, which must be paid at 1.5 times the regular wage rate.
What Are Your Rights As A Minimum Wage Worker?
Workers have certain rights under the Manitoba Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Act, which was established to ensure employees have a safe and healthy workplace to work in. More specifically, the following rights are afforded to employees under Section 2(2) (e) of the WSH Act:
- The right to know. All workers have the right to be informed of any workplace hazards and to understand how to mitigate against any risks.
- The right to participate. All workers have the right to participate in safety and health activities in the workplace.
- The right to refuse unsafe work. All workers have the right to refuse any work that they feel is a hazard to themselves or others.
- The right to protection from reprisal. All workers may exercise their rights under the WSH Act without having to face repercussions from their employers.
Is Manitoba’s Minimum wage increasing in 2021?
Do students receive minimum wage in Manitoba?
Does Manitoba have the lowest minimum wage in Canada?
How much would my yearly salary be if I made minimum wage in Manitoba?
Minimum wage was established in Manitoba to help ensure that workers are compensated enough at work to earn an income that can sustain them and help cover all basic costs of life. For 2021, that rate is $11.90, though that rate will increase in the years going forward.
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