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Saskatchewan Minimum Wage: Here’s What Employers Need to Know

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The minimum wage in Saskatchewan increased to $11.81 per hour from $11.45 on October 1, 2021. Changes to the Saskatchewan minimum wage are announced in June every year and come into force on October 1.

The province uses an indexation formula that takes into consideration the Consumer Price Index and average hourly wage.

What is minimum wage?

Minimum wage is the lowest wage you can pay your employees. The rules around minimum wage are set down in your province’s employment standards legislation. As an employer, you are free to pay more wages if you want to, but you can’t pay your staff less than the minimum wage. Those employed in federally regulated industries receive the federal minimum wage.

Does the $11.81 per hour minimum wage apply to all employees?

The hourly minimum wage rate applies to most employees. However, there are some exemptions. These include:

  • Farming, ranching or market garden labourers
  • Some care providers working in private homes
  • Babysitters (only if they are temporary or babysit sporadically)
  • Athletes while engaged in their athletic pursuits
  • Volunteers for non-profits
  • Those with physical or mental disability or impairment who work for a non-profit organization or institution in programs that are therapeutic, educational, or rehabilitative.

What is reporting for duty pay?

Under the Saskatchewan Employment Act (SEA), employees who report to work are entitled to at least three hours pay at their hourly wage, even if there is no work to do or they work for less than three hours. This is called reporting for duty pay.

An employee is still entitled to their reporting for duty pay if the employers calls them to work to hand them their lay-off or termination notice.

But reporting for duty pay rules don’t apply to overtime hours. Employees working overtime will receive their overtime pay (hourly wage x the overtime rate of 1.5) for each hour they have worked.

While reporting for duty pay rules apply to public holidays, the employee will receive whichever pay is higher – reporting for duty pay or wages for the hours worked (1.5 x regular wage) on a public holiday.

Are there any exceptions to reporting to duty pay?

Yes. Reporting for duty pay is minimum of one hour at the worker’s hourly wage for the following:

  • Students working within the school term
  • School bus drivers employed by a school board
  • Noon-hour supervisors employed by a school board

But if these employees work during school breaks, the regular reporting for duty pay rules would apply to them. Post-secondary students are eligible for regular reporting for duty pay rules all year round.

What are my obligations as an employer regarding the minimum wage in Saskatchewan?

Provincially regulated employers must pay their minimum wage workers the correct minimum wage ($11.81 per hour), which came into effect on October 1, 2021. You should also update your employment contracts and company handbooks to reflect the change.

Do you have questions about paying minimum wage?

Peninsula’s experts can assist you with any questions related to employee pay and help you with any HR, health & safety, and employment advice you may need.

As a trusted HR and health & safety consulting company, Peninsula serves over 4,500 small businesses across Canada. Peninsula’s clients receive ongoing updates of their workplace documentation and policies as legislation changes. They also benefit from 24/7 employer HR advice and are supported by legal assistance.

To learn more about how our services can benefit your business, call an expert today at 1 (833) 247-3652.