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Manitobas minimum wage is slipping compared to other provinces and thats hurting the poorest families, children and particularly women, who are the majority of minimum wage earners. That was the message CUPE Manitoba delivered to the provincial government in public hearings May 17.

Manitoba has the third-worst ranking for poverty in the country. That means the working poor families with children and, in particular, women workers are among the ones who stand to benefit most by upping minimum wage rates, said Paul Moist, CUPE Manitoba president.

CUPE recommended the province increase the minimum wage to 60 per cent of the Manitoba industrial average within the next two to three years. That would raise the minimum wage from $6.25 to $8.80 an hour.

Studies show that women are the majority of minimum-wage earners, Moist said. Raising the minimum wage can make a real difference for them and their families.