VIDEO: Protestors Say More Legislation Needed To Protect Workers After Minimum Wage Hike

A group of protestors want more legislation in place to protect workers after Ontario's recent minimum wage hike.

Workers across the province saw their wages rise from $11.60/hour to $14/hour Jan. 1.

Students Kiera Royle and Jocelyn Gates, both 21, lead the University of Windsor's NDP Club. They organized a protest in front of Windsor-west MPP Lisa Gretzky's office on Tecumseh Rd. at McDougall St. Friday.

Gates tells AM800 News recent benefit cuts by major corporations like Tim Horton's are just the tip of the iceberg — many people throughout Windsor-Essex are having their hours cut — sometimes in half.

"It's not even worth it to have the higher pay when their hours are getting cut so much," she says. "We need to make sure that better policies are in place so they're getting the money they deserve, as well as the hours that they deserve."

She says the wage increase could have been handled differently by the Liberals.

"The [Kathleen] Wynne government rushed it a little bit," says Gates. "They should have better policies in place to help small businesses in order to succeed with the minimum wage hike, not just to help the minimum wage earners."

Wynne recently accused the children of Tim Hortons' billionaire co-founder of bullying their employees after they cut benefits and paid breaks for employees.

Small businesses may be getting hit the hardest, but large corporations are the ones making the most changes, she added.

"We know for small businesses those profit margins are a lot smaller than the franchises and corporations," she says. "We also want to place light on the fact that these franchises are the ones — for the most part — that are taking away a lot of the benefits."

The minimum wage will increase again to $15/hour in 2019.