The Niagara Poverty Reduction Network is pleased to announce that Canalside Soda Company has become a certified living wage employer at the Champion level.
Canalside Soda Company began brewing Old Fashioned soda beverages in 2019 from its St. Catharines brewery. Their flavours all come from real ingredients, and are sweetened with cane sugar. Their inspiration comes from its close proximity to the Welland Canal and the thousands of hardworking farmers and factory workers that have worked canal-side over the last 200 years. In the heat of Niagara’s summer they’d quench their thirst with an ice cold soda, made locally. Their fresh flavours and clean label are a tribute to the high-quality products they’ve produced and shipped to ports around the world and a celebration of a job well done. Canalside Soda currently employs four full time staff.
“Being a start-up, it was important for us to ensure that our employees who give so much towards the success of our company are not going home at the end of each day to the stress and anxiety that goes along with poverty wages. Paying a living wage should be the goal of every business. Fortunately because we’re a newer company we were able to incorporate offering a living wage into our planning from the start,” says Sean Polden, Chief Soda Officer.
“We are pleased to see many local employers who recognize the value and benefits of paying at least a living wage. Paying a living wage takes direct action to address poverty and to help people afford their cost of living expenses,” says Aidan Johnson, Chair of the Niagara Poverty Reduction Network.
A living wage reflects what earners need to be paid based on the actual costs of living and being included in the community. A living wage is not the same as the legislated minimum wage. It is a voluntary commitment that employers can make to compensate directly-employed and contract-employed full-time and part-time workers. The 2019 living wage for Niagara region has been calculated to be $18.12/hour. If an employer’s total compensation package includes benefits such as dental and prescription drugs, the living wage can be lowered by at least $1.00/hour.
Learn more about Niagara’s living wage at www.wipeoutpoverty.ca. Niagara-area employers interested in becoming living wage certified can contact the Ontario Living Wage Network for more information at www.ontariolivingwage.ca