Michael Armstrong, an associate professor in Brock’s Goodman School of Business, has written a piece recently published in the Hamilton Spectator about the need for the Ontario government to provide its juries at least minimum wage.
The Ontario government is currently promoting a plan to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour. As Premier Kathleen Wynne says, “we need to make certain that our workers are treated fairly.” But if her government is serious about fairness, it needs to set the example by paying at least minimum wage to people serving on its juries.
Imagine you are one of the 180,000 people summoned to Ontario courthouses for possible jury selection each year. You spend several hours or days there, waiting to see if you get picked. If so, you attend your assigned trial for however long it lasts, receiving far less than minimum wage.
The government pays you nothing during the selection process, nor during the first 10 days of jury duty. You then receive $40 per day for days 11 to 49, and $100 daily thereafter. So, if the trial lasts a month (say, 21 weekdays, with perhaps six hours of court time each), you receive only $440 for your faithful service.
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