Plight of the average in the Kootenays

Capitalism is the most cruel form of economics ever designed by man.

Capitalism is the most cruel form of economics ever designed by man. Even today, long after the legalization of unions, companies that are non-unionized, are still paying their employees a minimum wage. The CEOs of these companies have no idea of the struggle their employees have to endure on a minimum wage. There are times when no annual wage increase is offered. If one is offered, it is usually in keeping with the rise in the cost of living, which leaves no improvement in the standard of living of the employees.

While increases take place during the year in hydro rates, car insurance rates, bus transportation, gasoline rates, parking meter rates, household insurance rates, prescription medicine increases, food increases, clothing increases, etc., the poor employees do not receive any increase in their earnings that would adequately compensate them for all of those increases.

What to do?

Considering that almost 70 per cent of Canada’s workforce is non-unionized, there either needs to be a strong push by the labour unions to show the employees, especially in the retail sector, the benefits that would accrue to joining a union. An alternative is for each province to pass legislation that all non-union employees must receive an annual increase in their wages equal to two per cent above the rise in the standard of living.

I am not advocating that all employees earn an equivalent to what a CEO earns in the first three days of the new year (a sum equal to the annual take home pay of the average worker), I am only asking for a chance for those low paid workers in society to have a chance to improve their standard of living and not be perpetually held down to an intolerable level of poverty in a country as rich as Canada.

Bob Abrahams



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