Consultation on a modern fair wages policy

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

Current status: Closed

This consultation closed on December 14, 2018.

We thank everyone who participated in the survey and submitted feedback to help develop a modern fair wages policy. In the upcoming months, the Government of Canada will release the results of what we heard during the consultation.

Consultation details

All Canadians are welcome to participate in this consultation; we are particularly interested in hearing from government suppliers, unions, and subject-matter experts.

What the consultation is about

The Government of Canada spends close to $25 billion every year to procure goods and services through contracts with a large number of suppliers. In order to leverage these procurement contracts to help improve the lives of Canadians, the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour was asked by the Prime minister to work with the Minister of Public Services and Procurement and the President of the Treasury Board to implement a modern fair wages policy. This consultation seeks your views to shape and inform the development of this new policy.

Fair wages policies are designed to prevent suppliers from competing for government contracts on the basis of substandard wages. They typically require contractors to pay their employees above a certain threshold, defined as prevailing wages for the occupation in a given region.

There are a number of programs that place different requirements on contractors who do business with the federal government, such as the Federal Contractors Program, which requires large firms to seek to achieve and maintain a representative workforce, and the Procurement Strategy for Aboriginal Business, which aims to assist Aboriginal business development. There are also a number of provinces, territories and cities with fair wages policies in place.

The federal government also had a fair wages policy under the Fair Wages and Hours of Labour Act, which covered contractors and subcontractors in the construction, remodeling, repair or demolition industries. This legislation was repealed in 2014.

In order to move forward with the development of a modern fair wages policy for the federal government, we are seeking your views in three different areas:

  • Who should be covered by this policy?
  • What should the policy require?
  • How should this policy be enforced?

By completing the survey, you will help us gain a better understanding of how best to move forward with a new policy.

Contact us

Interested media can contact media relations

Send us your questions about this consultation.

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Thank you for your help!

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