Yahoo! Finance: Communities around Ontario call on MPPs to melt the minimum wage freeze now

TORONTO, March 21, 2013 /CNW/ - At a province-wide day of action on Thursday March 21st, communities from around Ontario will demand an immediate minimum wage increase. Blocks of ice with frozen $10 bills will be delivered to the Ministry of Labour and MPPs in over fourteen cities.

Ontario's minimum wage has been frozen for 3 years, while the cost of living continues to rise. The minimum wage should bring workers and their families above the poverty line. That means Ontario's minimum wage should be $14 in 2013.

"The minimum wage should not freeze workers into poverty and hopelessness" says Acsana Alam, a Workers' Action Centre member. "We need to see an increase so we can meet our families' basic needs."

"Our communities need an increase in the minimum wage right away, it's impossible to make ends meet on $10.25 an hour. Parents are forced to work two or more jobs. They're being kept from their families. Low wages are causing all sorts of problems." said Nicole Mason, leading member of Ontario ACORN from Flemingdon Park.

"A strong minimum wage can boost our economy since working families will have more income to spend on necessities in local businesses, putting money back into local economies," stated Navjeet Sidhu, from Social Planning Toronto . "A minimum wage increase is an investment in healthy communities and good jobs for workers in Ontario."

Melt the Freeze actions are taking place in Toronto, Ottawa, Hamilton, Peterborough, York Region, Kingston, London, Windsor, Belleville, Welland, Kitchener-Waterloo, Oshawa, Cornwall and Sudbury on March 21st and March 22nd.

Launch Date: Thursday March 21, 2013, 12pm

Location: Toronto: Ministry of Labour office, 400 University Ave.

What: Rally, with a mountain of ice on the doorsteps of the Ministry of Labour.
Local contacts:

Ottawa: March 21st, 1pm
Rally at Ottawa Ministry of Labour office, 247 Preston St.
Contact: Jill O'Reilly, ACORN-Ottawa, 613 808 6523

Peterborough: Contact: Paul Brown 705-559-1397

London: Contact: Patti Dalton, 519-494-3901

York Region: Contact: Yvonne Kelly, 416-697-4208

Kingston: Contact: Marijana Matovic,

Windsor: Contact: Lorena Shepley,

Welland: Contact: Community Roundtable on Poverty, Mary Beth Anger Sheffield

Sudbury: Contact: Christy Knockelby, SCAP

Hamilton: Contact: Deirdre Pike, Hamilton Organizing for Poverty Elimination,

Kitchener-Waterloo Contact: Poverty Makes us Sick,
The Campaign to Raise the Minimum Wage is coordinated by ACORN, Freedom 90, Mennonite New Life Centre, OCAP, Ontario Campaign 2000, Parkdale Community Legal Services, Put Food in the Budget, Social Planning Toronto, Toronto and York Region Labour Council and Workers' Action Centre

SOURCE: Workers Action Centre