Cornwall business in ‘peril’: 25% asked would face possible closure

CORNWALL – One in four businesses surveyed in Cornwall say their “survival would be in question” if the Ontario government goes ahead with all of its proposed labour law changes.

That’s according to results from a Cornwall and Area Chamber of Commerce survey released Tuesday.

In addition to a $15 per hour minimum wage by 2019, Bill 148 would also allow for paid personal days and three hours pay for shifts cancelled within 48 hours.

“It’s forcing many small businesses to re-evaluate their future,” said Todd Lihou, chairman of the chamber’s political advisory committee.

Also in the survey, 42 per cent of businesses said they would cut employee hours and 35 per cent would resort to layoffs.

This week, Ontario Financial Accountability Officer Stephen LeClair said more than 50,000 jobs could be wiped out by the proposed $15 an hour minimum wage – mostly jobs for young people.

The local and provincial chambers continue to lobby the government to take a “more realistic approach” to Bill 148.