NDP minimum wage announcement

Provincial NDP Leader Mike Redmond and Joe Byrne of the Federal Council of the NDP want to see an immediate increase in the minimum wage. (John Jeffery/CBC)

Representatives of federal and provincial NDP held a joint news conference Thursday to ask for a minimum wage increase on P.E.I.

Provincial Leader Mike Redmond said the wage should move from $10 to $10.30 an hour, matching the highest minimum wage in the region in Nova Scotia.

The party is making a submission to the Employment Standards Board that will also include a suggestion the province move towards a basic income guarantee for Islanders.

Minimum wage increases

June 1, 2011: $9.30

Oct. 1, 2011: $9.60

April 1, 2012: $10

“We should not be afraid to make the business case for a living wage for all workers," said Redmond.

"Higher wages are good for workers, higher wages are good for the local economy, higher wages are good for business, for all businesses."

"We have the lowest wages in Canada, the highest unemployment rate and the weakest overall economic performance."

The party says the province should aim to keep its minimum wage the highest in the region, while monitoring the impact on business and overall economic performance.

The province went through a three-step process to increase the minimum wage to $10. In early 2011 it was $9 an hour.