The Coalition of Progressive Electors is pleased to support Tom Mulcair and the NDP’s call for a $15/hour minimum wage for federal employees.
In the meantime, COPE is pressing for even stronger measures to combat income inequality in the city of Vancouver. Once elected, COPE Councillors will seek an amendment to the Vancouver Charter to confer powers upon the City that will allow it to set a municipal minimum wage. The initial wage will be set at $15/hr with the aim of closing the gap between a minimum and a living wage (that is currently closer to $20/hr).
“COPE believes that no one should live right at the poverty line,” said Meena Wong, COPE’s candidate for mayor. “The current minimum wage in BC is $10.25 but the cost of living in Vancouver is almost double that, according to the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.”
COPE looks south to Seattle for an example of a successful push for a municipal $15/hour minimum wage. Kshama Sawant, Seattle City Councillor, was elected on a platform that included a $15/hour minimum wage and mobilized a diverse cross-section of Seattle’s working people to have it enacted this summer.
“Kshama Sawant shows us the way to $15/hour in Seattle,” said Meena Wong. “By taking a stand with low-wage workers, she shifted the whole debate across the continent. Now almost everyone is recognizing that when everyone gets a living wage, people can live in dignity and support the local economy.”
On Saturday September 27th at 7pm at the Maritime Labour Centre, Kshama Sawant will speak about the fight for $15/hour on behalf of COPE.
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The Coalition of Progressive Electors (COPE) is Vancouver’s oldest progressive electoral organization. Founded in 1968, it is a membership based organization that stands for affordability, environmental sustainability, and robust arts and culture. It last held a majority on Vancouver City Council, Parks Board, and School Board 2002-2005. More information is available at https://cope.bc.ca.