January 4th, 2018

Wealth of Nova Scotia's richest families grew by $770 million last year while wages stagnated

Other provinces moving towards $15 minimum wage

HALIFAX – In 2017, the three richest families in Nova Scotia added $770 million to their net worth, an increase of 15.8 per cent, while at the same time purchasing power for average Nova Scotians declined.

“The economy isn’t working for the vast majority of people who go to work each day and still can’t get ahead,” said NDP Leader Gary Burrill. “When the system allows a handful of people to accumulate this extraordinary level of wealth while more and more people can’t afford to heat their homes or buy nutritious food for their families, we have a problem.”

Average weekly earnings for people in Nova Scotia remained stagnant last year, increasing by just 1.5 per cent in 2017, lower than the inflation rate of 1.8 per cent.

“Under Stephen McNeil’s watch, incomes for most Nova Scotians have been stagnating,” said Burrill. “While other provinces are moving towards a $15 minimum wage, the McNeil Liberals are focused on small changes that don’t do enough to help.”

Earlier this week, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives reported that the 100 richest CEOS in Canada made more money by 10:57 am on January 2 than the average Canadian worker will make in all of 2018.

“This growing level of income inequality in our province is unacceptable,” said Burrill. “More needs to be done so people in our province can make ends meet.”
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