Legislation to boost minimum wage to $15 in 2019 passed in Ontario.

Ontario has passed sweeping labour reform legislation, which includes increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour in 2019.Currently at $11.60 an hour, the minimum wage will rise under the legislation to $14 an hour on Jan. 1, 2018, with the increase to $15 coming in 2019.

The plan has been controversial with businesses who said the increase is too fast and will lead to job losses but it  has proved largely popular in government polling and with labour advocates.

The government and some economists argue that the hike will have some positive impact on the economy, as minimum wage earners get more spending power.

The Liberal government recently announced the provincial corporate tax rate for small businesses will be cut from 4.5 % to 3.5 % to help support businesses through the minimum wage transition, though Premier Kathleen Wynne said it was never intended to fully offset the impact.

The legislation also mandates equal pay for part-time workers, increases vacation entitlements and expands personal emergency leave.

However, Ontario PCs promise to slow $15 minimum wage increase if elected in 2018.