Mr. Speaker, in my hometown of Hamilton 30,000 people do not earn enough income from their jobs to keep them above the poverty line. The situation is even worse for women, aboriginals and members of visible minority groups who disproportionately make up the working poor. Undaunted, last month a coalition of community partners including the Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction, the Social Planning and Research Council, McMaster Community Poverty Initiative and the Hamilton Training Advisory Board launched Living Wage Hamilton.
Living Wage Hamilton will work with employers in the private, non-profit and public sectors to encourage them to develop and adopt policies that will pay a wage that allows people to do more than just meet minimum basic needs. It will provide for a decent quality of life for workers and their families. It will also provide benefits to businesses and the community as a whole.
I want to congratulate Living Wage Hamilton for its leadership on the issue of poverty reduction. I am hopeful that businesses and community associations will work together to ensure that everyone in Hamilton has a living—