Well, here’s a nifty little statistic courtesy of The Canadian Press: By 1:11 p.m. on Thursday, January 2, just 37 hours and 11 minutes into the New Year, our country’s top CEOs would have already earned as much as Canada’s average full-time worker’s annual salary.
The top 100 CEOs, the report indicates, earned $7.96 million, on average, of course, in 2012.
But wait, there’s more: The average worker’s salary in 2012, according to the report, was $46,634.
Inasmuch as many Canadians would love to have the earnings of the country’s top CEOs, many Islanders here would be thrilled to earn even the average Canadian worker’s salary.
But, here we are, in the fifteenth year of the twenty-first millennium, still getting by, largely, on a seasonal economy. It’s hard getting by on minimum wage and a little better for part of the year and then having to rely on an unpredictable Employment Insurance system for the rest of the year.
There’s little wonder why more and more Islanders are packing up and heading west: most of them are not even coming close to the average Canadian worker’s salary while living here.
And that’s a shame, because we need workers’ salaries so that the businesses that are here can survive. If the exodus continues there will be not enough money in circulation for some stores and restaurants and service providers to stay in business. If they close, then there will be even more workers finding it necessary to leave.
Perhaps some of the country’s top CEOs can find a way to expand their corporations’ activities to P.E.I. and put Islanders to work. There would be many Islanders thrilled to work for them for the average Canadian worker’s salary, maybe even for less.
Of course, we can’t lose sight of the fact there are many employers here, like farmers, fishermen and tourism operators, who will continue to need workers on a seasonal basis. More effort has to be made to find employment for those workers in their off-season. Perhaps those top-paid CEOs can find a way to capitalize on the seasonal workforce’s down time and also bring back P.E.I.-born workers who long to live and work here.
And all the power to the CEOs who would get rewarded by their shareholders for successfully venturing into and growing Prince Edward Island’s economy.