Alberta's minimum wage is going up to $15/hour as of Monday, October 1 this year.

Great news for some, but not for local businesses, particularly service industries like restaurants according to High River Chamber of Commerce President Steven Muth.

Muth says the timing is just bad.

"This minimum wage increase over the past couple of years is coming amidst the worst Alberta economy in this generation. So, that's just put an industry that's already under a lot of pressure because of other increasing costs and decreasing revenue, they're definitely feeling the pinch. And unfortunately all they can do is lay off staff."

Muth says local businesses he's talked to, tell him they're having a hard time maintaining staff levels, or hiring new staff with each hike to the minimum wage.

Muth says it's particularly hard on those looking for a first time job, or students looking for part time work, as employers are opting to hire people with more experience instead.

 

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