Wages far from level

Tobias Romaniuk
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

Unionized Newfoundland and Labrador trades trail the country in wages: StatsCan

— Telegram file photo

Steve and Michelle Galway left Newfoundland  to work in Alberta about four years ago, and

while they’d both like to return home, it just isn’t worth it.

“If I could make the same money that I make out here I’d be home in a second,” says Steve. But that isn’t the case.

Statistics Canada has released a comparison of unionized skilled trades wages across the country, and the results show that while wages have risen in Newfoundland, they are still significantly lower than the rest of the country.

In fact, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick are the only places that pay lower than Newfoundland.

“Do I go home and survive, or do I stay here and have a life?” asks Steve.

So far, the answer has been to stay in Alberta and enjoy the freedom that comes with earning more money.


It was the low wages at home that originally drove them west, said Michelle. The two had recently graduated classes in carpentry and were working as first year apprentices.

“We left because we weren’t making enough money. I was making $12 an hour when I left Newfoundland,” said Michelle.

When the couple arrived in Alberta, Michelle found a job with a home building company and started at $6 per hour more than she was making in Newfoundland.

The Galway’s story is one that many Newfoundlanders could tell, and one that is all too familiar to those left looking for workers at home.

Dave Wade, executive director of the Building and Construction Trades Council, said the westward migration of skilled trades people is a direct reason of the trades shortage in Newfoundland.

“The shortages that we currently have are because people are currently working elsewhere,” he said.

The council is working to bridge the wage gap, and while they’ve made some progress, there is still a ways to go, said Wade.

“Each major project we try to step up a rung on the ladder,” he said.

The result has been carpenters working on Long Harbour projects now receiving $29 an hour plus wage benefits, bringing the rate to near the $32 an hour mark.

But even those wages, among the best in the province, are lower than what an similarly skilled worker could make in Alberta.

The fight to wage rages to be competitive with the rest of the country are met with opposition, with some people fearing the work will dry up if wages are raised.

“There’s a lot of people in the province who are making a pitch that we shouldn’t be driving the cost of construction up,” said Wade.

But that argument isn’t something he agrees with, and will only lead to a continuing worker shortage, he said.

At one time, the argument could be made that living in Newfoundland was cheaper than living out west, but with a recent rise in housing costs and the increase in consumer goods prices, that just isn’t true anymore, said Carol Furlong, the president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Public and Private Employees union (NAPE).

“There might have been a time when that was the case, but you can’t hide behind that anymore,” she said.

The problem of wage inequality is something NAPE has been trying to raise awareness about.

“We’ve raised that red flag numerous times,” she said.

If the gap isn’t closed, the exodus will continue, she said.

“It will mean people will leave the province.”

Or, in the case of Steve and Michelle Galway, it means people who want to return home will instead stay away until they can afford the lifestyle they’ve become accustomed to.

“I’d love to be back home, but financially we can’t go home,” said Michelle. “Ya, I’d love to go home.”

To see the differences in wages between Newfoundland and other provinces, visit the Statistics Canada page here: http://tinyurl.com/7sh82bt

To see wage rates for different trades or time periods, click on the ‘add/remove data’ tab.

The wages displayed are for unionized trades. Details are available in the footnotes.

St. John’s

Basic construction union hourly rates as of March 2012

Carpenter     $28.29

Crane operator     $24.00

Electrician     $31.32

Labourer     $25.12

Plumber     $33.19

Reinforcing steel erector    $29.52

Heavy equipment operator    $23.01


Basic construction union hourly rates as of March 2012

Carpenter     $38.63

Crane operator     $41.69

Electrician     $44.34

Labourer     $33.70

Plumber     $42.29

Reinforcing steel erector    $35.02

Heavy equipment operator         $39.49


Organizations: Statistics Canada, Building and Construction Trades Council, Newfoundland and Labrador Public Private Employees union

Geographic location: Newfoundland, Alberta, Nova Scotia New Brunswick Long Harbour

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page



Recent comments

  • lol....response to jack
    May 01, 2012 - 17:38

    lol...."Until employers start showing more respect for our own work force here in Nfld . , we are just going to move on ." ...........lol again.....listen Jack, not sure what you consider respect, but as an employer of unskilled workers who do menial work, the biggest problem with my newfoundland operations was that "respect" for the workers meant more money, health benefits, pensions benefits and so on. The workers failed to not acknowledge that they do menial work are not anymore valuable than the next person walking down the street. If they did a job that was more important, I would likely give them something more. But sadly, they do not, so I cannot justify giving them anything more, because the task they do is not worth it, even through my profits and profit margins increased every year. They insist on health benefits and raises that keep up with inflation. They insist that because my profits and profit margins are increasing, their compensation should increase to. They insist on a slice of my pie. Well, to hell with that. I politely told my workforce that I simply do not care about their ability to make ends meet or own a home. I told them that it would be cheaper for me to move a company rather than give anything to the workers. I told them that the function they preform does not justify anything more. The continued to press for more, until I got fed up and closed the NL office down. I moved to a cheaper area, and I pay the workers far less while charging my customers the same...and the output of the workers was of the same quality. In short, I lined my pockets not because I needed to but because the workers refused to accept that they were not entitled to anything more and not worth anything more than minimum wage. Well I wonder where they are now. The point is that, while people like Jack may think that workers are entitled to more "respect", many employers like me feel that the workers already get too much and more value for money can be attained from workers in other parts of the country or the world. I only opened a NL office because I am originally from NL, but even though I was making money there, there was more money, and easier money to be made by using workers from other parts of the world. So I closed down a very profitable NL office and opened up a similar operation somewhere else and now have workers who are satisfied with what they get. They don't ask for more, which saves my time as I do not have to say NO. In my opinion, the problem with NL is that many workers think they are entitled to more respect and more money, when really what they bring to the table is barely (if at all) worth the NL minimum wage.

  • Blair Brookfield
    May 01, 2012 - 03:54

    I've lived in Vancouver and Calgary and can tell you that trouble won't find you in these places, you've gotta look for it. Spent six years combined in both and never had a problem. In fact, I'd say you're just as likely to get a random shot in the face on George Street, as anywhere in Canada.

  • Justin
    April 30, 2012 - 23:45

    Hi, i am a working professional in the oilsands of Fort McMurray. I was born in and raised in NL. All my working life has been in Alberta. I somtimes fly home to see family in NL. The home prices are throu the roof in St.John's and surrounding areas. I make around 20,000 $ a month here in Fort Mac so a 500,000$ home is easily afforable. I love NL as much as the next person but 60,000 $ at Long Harbour for a couple of years here and a couple at Hebron just dont cut it in my world. I did like the comment that called St.John's St.Oxyjohn. It is so true...... my advise if you dont like where you are in the world move and do something positive with it. Do not get me wrong, it has not always been easy up here but it was my choice

  • Big NeWF
    April 30, 2012 - 20:56

    Boo Hoo!!!! Listen to the pile of drivel that spews out of Da Rock once again. I thought we were supposed to be proud of who we are and where we come from. All this garbage about wages only pushes you more towards those CFA's you so profusely despise. For over 40 years, newfies have been heading else where to seek better employment. My dad went to Ft Mac when I was 7. Stayed for a while. Didn't like it because it wasn't home to him. Now that was a choice he made. Every single one of you who wants everything to be the same, should give this life out here a whirl before you make such comments. I have been here for 11 years, and it's nothing but a rat race. Would I be home if I could make the same money? Not a snowballs chance in hell. There is nothing back home for my kids. I want more for them. Life does exist outside the fish bowl that is Newfoundland. If you don't live in behind the overpass, or dam close to it, there is no prosperity on the Rock. Head out to Bonavista or down to Harbor Breton and see what housing prices are or rental rates. Give me a break. You can't compare apples to oranges. People out here can make good money. But our minimum wage is the same as yours. Maybe even lower. These jobs need to be filled out here too you know. So how does a person making min. wage pay $1500 rent each month? They only gross $1600 a month!!!!!!!! I make a bundle of money, as does my wife. But it does not buy us any more happiness. We just spend more of it to try and get what most newfoundlanders take for granted. A little piece of heaven. People......give your head a shake. Remember....be careful what you wish for. Or did you all forget confederation? It was supposed to be the savior for Newfoundland. Just imagine, if we had not joined confederation, we would get ALL the royalties from Hibernia. But some of you looked at the short term gain of confederation. Shame Shame Shame!!!!! Money is not the root of the problems in Newfoundland. The problem is its own people. Stop crying over what you don't have, and look at what you do have, and what can be done with it. The only reason why the grass looks greener on the other side of the fence, is because there is more crap to deal with. Didn't any of you read about the fellow who started his own testing company that does some fancy testing on oilfield produce? He should be what you all aspire to be. Energetic, independant, and motivated. Instead, you all want to be spoon-fed and catered to. Me, ME, Me! That's all I hear from home these days. It is days like this that I am actually ashamed to call myself a newfoundlander. I hate it every time it happens.

  • response to Temp Worker
    April 30, 2012 - 20:45

    Temp Worker said he works in "a "temporary" position permanently but make barely above minimum wage while my employer gets 15 an hour, I do heavy labor that pays twenty an hour in other provinces. I can't refuse unsafe work. If I refuse unsafe work, the client can stop "calling for me" and get someone else to take over, effectively firing me".....................Sorry to people like TEMP WORKER, but I do the same thing with my unskilled uneducated employees. Leaving employees on temp stautus indefinately gives the employer flexability....it allows me to plug and play employees as needed. I just want people to do work, and would plug and play a new employee before I give an unskilled worker a raise. I pay the minumum wage, and these employees will never get to $12 dollars an hour. In short, workers without skills or education are disposable and I will dispose of them before they get a raise. this has nothing to do with profits...no matter what my profit margin is, an unskilled educated worker is only worth the minimum wage and not a penny more. Yes, I probably sound very cold but take note that a) my position has nothing to do with the actual employees but rather my desire for more and more profits, and b) even though I openly regard my unskilled/uneducated employees as disposable, I have a stack of application that currently contains at least 750 application and more come in every day. You could call it corporate greed, but at the end of the day, I have a right to plug and play employees as I see fit in the companies that I own...... if the government or anyone tries to infringe on my right to plug and play employees, then I will move the company to another country. TEMP WORKER ALSO SAID " I don't want to get too specific but there's no justice for the common worker in this province and I hate paying taxes to a government that doesn't care about me.".............To be honest again, I have to say that the common worker is disposable because the skills they possess are readily available by people who are more than happy to be given a job. The key is to be MORE than a common worker. Go to university, get a degree, make yourself an asset and you will be treated well. I pay all of my valuable workers well. The engineers, marketing professionals, IT professionals, accountants, HR professionals, and many others are examples of teh workers that I pay very well. I offers these skilled educated workers competitive wages, health benefits, stock options, annual wage increases, expense account, maternity top up and so on. WHY? because these workers are valuable, key to my operations and worth retaining. THE COMMON WORKER on the other hand is just a disposable tool that is not worth more than minimum wage. So rather than complain, do what you can to be more than a common worker. In this economic climate with the increasing percentage population that is college and university educated, the common worker really has nothing to offer an employer that is worth retaining. Nothing personal, just supply and demand

    • todd
      May 01, 2012 - 11:49

      How dear you judge me because I am on EI. And there is an obvious problem with employers here. I didn't say at all that I don't want to work or don't want to leave the province to find better jobs. And yes, it is a problem that trades people are not making enough here, and the rent is aweful. Stop defending Newfoundland are judging people you don't know. You have no idea about any of the issues I am having, so don't try to tell me I am lazy. I look for work everyday. I am leaving this stinkhole.

  • jack
    April 30, 2012 - 20:43

    Thank God we live in a free economy where every man and woman has the opportunity to move to where the money is if they have the desire to do so . Until employers start showing more respect for our own work force here in Nfld . , we are just going to move on . I remember a few years ago my brother in law was making 20,000 $/yr more tax free on per diums for food and vehicle in Alberta than his own brother was making working offshore here in Nfld .!!?..and the offshore work was much more demanding .

  • robert dunning
    April 30, 2012 - 20:22

    now living in BC and years in MB let me give my take. first of all if we could eliminate central Canada what a wonderful country we could have[sorry 6 years in AB]. this country of all of ours would be the strongest and best country in the world. i love the coast[born in PEI] and will never bad mouth either coast or western Canada or the north. sometimes bad things happen but this country of ours[not of course central Canada] is the best on this planet.

  • stephen
    April 30, 2012 - 20:01

    I live in Ottawa,work as a maintenance tech for housing comp. Salary is union 26.03 per hr. My wife also works for a large rental comp . She is non union. She makes 25.00 per hr as a anaylist,but gets good bonuses. Ottawa has gangs ,dope ,crime and whatever,just like the rest of the world. I could prob make more in Fort Mac,however my mortgage in Ottawa is 1100 a month on a new 1600 ft town home.235,000 was purchase price.Fort Mac around 395000, NL around 260,000.Cost of living no different than St. johns,gas is 1.27 a litre.I am not rich,but I live a very comfortable life. I would move back to the rock,if I could find a job that pays about the same and also my wife.St.Johns is just as expensive as Otttawa,thw wheather here is great in Spring and summer,the winters are cold but short in comparison to Nl. If the trades want NLs to return home,the greed factor needs to be looked at. Business is good in St,Johns,but whose making the money? Ps I go to Quebec to buy my beer. 15 minutes from my house, 24 coors lite 22.50 yep a 24.Ontario 38.75 buy 6 per trip save almost 100.00

  • CouldBe InFlorida
    April 30, 2012 - 19:54

    Fort Crack? What about St.Oxyjohn here? Drugs are everywhere, and this place is just as much of a haven. If you don't want drugs, then don't be looking for 'em. Alberta has taken many a Newfoundlander and gave them a life, and Sun for that matter. Anybody who has never left this rock is missing out. There is a life beyond 'ol Sin John's, and an excellent one at that. So don't be knockin other provinces until you fix this one up first. Can't help with the Sun though, maybe TNTer off the ocean floor and get the Svanen to drag her south.

  • CouldBe InFlorida
    April 30, 2012 - 19:43

    Anybody who thinks it's cheaper to live here in NL ought to get their head checked! Let's not even get into talking about wages, everything here...gas,food,electricity, heating oil, clothes, etc. through the roof here. Oh, it's from having to have it shipped here? Duh! Of course it is. Try living in parts of Labrador, and see how much stuff costs. You're only living here because you've been here all your life, your afraid to move, or can't leave family behind, or can't get off your arse to go. That's the only reason. There's not an incentive around here to have a family or even stay. Why stay? Crime is based on population, and for our size, we have plenty. The weather? Worst in Canada, even the polititians (or the devil) leave when they are through sucking us dry. Flights and ferry to and fro? By jezus, it's cheaper to fly to England than to get to this fog bank. So why stay? It's simple...your GD stuck!

  • saltheart
    April 30, 2012 - 19:01

    well, this is an article to be shown to high school kids, just so they know what wages are like in real world and what professions pays what, that way they will not rely on government sponsered schooling of trades that just don't pay what they should, maybe a higher education, you can;t compare us with alberta, their oil is on land which entitles them to more prifits, and they have so much more oil than we do, they had it longer, they have less debt. less taxes,

  • Willy Makeit
    April 30, 2012 - 18:29

    Wages and salary are indeed lower in NL than many other places. AND the costs of living in NL is NOT less, than elsewhere. Used to be cheaper, in some aspects but not anymore. In any case, cost of living differences usually do not make up for significant differences in wages. I know many people who returned to NL, in both professional and trades fields. ALL of them, left NL again because the wages were too low in comparison. I wouldn't expect the wages/salaries to be on par with some other places, but they certainly need to be closer. The University and most trade schools in NL are quite well respected elsewhere and they turn out some really good people. We need to be able to hold a higher percentage of those people in NL to build the market and capability for future growth. AGAIN, the university here turns out a lot of high caliber talent in several fields .. need to have the opportunities available locally to benefit from the money spent on education.

  • No Wonder
    April 30, 2012 - 17:49

    On viewing the salary comparisons in this article, I remember reading an article several weeks ago regarding a demonstration that the health care trades people held in demand for better wages. No wonder they are upset, their salaries are much lower than the low salary used here as the comparison. I wonder why these people have not dropped their tools and say goodbye to the public service. Disgusting! And then the government makes a statement of time for belt tightening; with salaries like this that come in far below the template used for low, they should be ashamed!

  • Left Home
    April 30, 2012 - 17:33

    I moved from one end of the province to the other in search of work, and have to say that the cost of living has risen so dramatically that it's on par with other parts of the country, even if wages aren't. And this disparity isn't limited to construction jobs either. It breaks my heart to make the same wage as other workers in the province and have to spend double the price for a house. So it isn't just a problem outside of the province, it's happening inside it as well. Where is the incentive to stay?

  • Temp Worker
    April 30, 2012 - 17:30

    Temp Workers get the worst of it. I work a "temporary" position permanently but make barely above minimum wage while my employer gets 15 an hour, I do heavy labor that pays twenty an hour in other provinces. I can't refuse unsafe work. If I refuse unsafe work, the client can stop "calling for me" and get someone else to take over, effectively firing me through a legal loophole to make sure that their business remains profitable by doing work that other companies don't do because of the safety concerns. I don't want to get too specific but there's no justice for the common worker in this province and I hate paying taxes to a government that doesn't care about me. If I could work for cash under the table I would, and I wouldn't bat an eye about it. At least I'd be paid better than I am now and getting the same benefits - nada. I fractured my finger but can't go on comp because I won't get my old position back. Of course, I'm a student and I need the money so I can't exactly complain or sue anyone for the rights I pay for but hey, this is a free country, so I get used to paying for the freedoms of the elite and well-off.

  • LeavingNextMonth
    April 30, 2012 - 17:14

    As a Newfoundlander who thankfully is relocating back to Alberta the end of May, I can not help myself from laughing so hard at some of the comments posted here. It is obvious that some of these comments were written by people who have never experienced life outside NL. The once true notion of "cheap surviving" in Newfoundland is no longer true. What you people need to realize is that when you see apartments going for 1350-1800 in places like Edmonton, Calgary or Fort Mac, the rental schematics are completely different than they are down here in NL. For instance when I get to Calgary my rent will be $1550 a month. That rental fee includes heat, hot water, electricity, full digital cable high speed internet and phone. So when you factor in the cost of utilities then those prices are not so outlandish as some die hard Newfoundlanders want to believe. The issue on drugs and crime in big cities is no different than down here in NL, you just hear more of it due to larger populations. As for those complaining about cost of food, do yourself a favour and go online and compare dominion prices to superstore prices in Alberta (for those who have never left NL, it's the same store just different name). I for one am looking forward to when I begin my trek across Canada, and I seriously hope that the poor individual who takes over my job not limit himself/herself to a pathetic 35000 a year salary.

  • Thinking out loud
    April 30, 2012 - 16:03

    Stop your crying and get a job, any job is better than EI or welfare.

  • California Pete from NFLD
    April 30, 2012 - 15:49

    I left to give my family and a descant living with a higher income and a better education . I have no regrets and cost of living is way low compared to NL.

  • Joseph McGrath
    April 30, 2012 - 12:48

    I do not see anything wrong with leaving NL if you able able to better your self and provide more for your family.This is absolute if you are a young couple with good woking slills and cannot find a suitable job in NL.Why not!!!!People have been doing it for years and will continue to do so.The people of this Province have a big footprint in many other areas of Canada ,more recently the WEST.Years ago it was Ontario with many settling in communities near Toronto.I urged most of my children to leave as the skills they had were more easily used elsewhere in Canada and the opportunities for their own kids were far better.None have forgotten that NL was once their home but are happy with their lot elsewhere.They do not have to listen to the endless spew of doom and gloom coming through the media nor do they depend on government or who you know to obtain and advance in their careers.Whenever I listen to or read the news I mostly hear condemnation of all levels of government and extra helpings of dumping on the social sectors such as health,education,childcare and seniors programs.Our financial system should be much better considering that we are a "HAVE PROVINCE"now but this does not seem to change the daily rant!!!!!Who really cares what the wage levels are in NL if you can better youself and your future by shoving off to others parts of the country or the world.Untill we accept in NL that many areas of outport NL are going to die and the governments cannot do everything from raising our children to caring for our seniors to burying our dead we shall never be satisfied and we shall forever seek solace on the public teet.go figure!!!

  • Sherrie
    April 30, 2012 - 12:25

    Finding work outside of the minimum wage job here is St. john's is hard..government jobs are great..i have been stuck int eh same job two years..but am skilled in much more..and i am only making just over minimum wage..a freind of mine whom i wne to school with is living in Alberta making 3 times the amount..but life ain't all about money..or i try to think of lif3 like that..Newfoundland is my home..drugs are here..they are there..they are everywhere..same with crime..point being..the cost of living here..seems like we can't get ahead..min wage goes up and so does cost of living..can't afford to live anywhere lately unless you got a degree..or got your foot in the door..sad thing about St. John's..never gives the lil guy a chance..to get ahead..someone may have more skills or education but i bet i have just as good if not better customer service skills..noone here gives you a chance..

  • David
    April 30, 2012 - 12:06

    So wages aren't level. Whoever said they are supposed to be, or should be, or are meant to be, or need to be ? Get over this socialist, union perception of the world and live in the real one.

    • skipper
      April 30, 2012 - 12:58

      DP have u watched the news or read a news paper ever? There is drugs and crime in NFLD per capital there is more than in Edmonton or FT.MacMurray or any where else in Canada maybe.Also check the house prices or rent i think that they have doubled in the past couple of years,By the way i pay $ 1.11 for gas what do u pay? Yes i am a nflder living in Alberta.

  • DP
    April 30, 2012 - 10:30

    I honestly don't understand the point some commentors are trying to make. There are drugs in Fort Mac and crime in Edmonton therefore we should not want to live there and wages for skilled workers in NL should not be raised?? I am also tired of the esoteric belief held by NLers that the cost of rent/mortgage is far less in this province, than in Alberta or other provinces. Have you done your own research to compare your own rent/mortage to the rates in other provinces? It will be, as I have learned, not what you would expect. I agree with other commentors the issue of the skilled workers gap lies with the fact employers are hesitant to hire apprentices, and therefore apprentices leave the province and are in turn, hesitant to return because they couldn't possibly make the same annual salary. This topic was brought up in an article posted by VOCM recently, and the comments left by employers were in concensus that they do not have time to train new apprenticies, or they felt waste money on training. It's a digusting realization that NLers hold no worth in their own province, and it is beyond time the socioeconomic inequality which supresses NL Canadians be eradicated so that we can not only grow as a province, but as people.

  • tally
    April 30, 2012 - 09:41

    It's not just the trades that are underpaid, but social sevice workers, such as daycare staff, respite, behavioral aids, etc. We pay someone over 20 bucks an hour to fix our toilet, but only $12 to look after someone with special needs....does that even make sense? I thought human life and a good quality of life should be worth more. I would take construction over being a personal care worker anyday, and not because of the pay. The whole system needs an overhaul, one that i dont think will ever happen.

  • Ron
    April 30, 2012 - 09:31

    “The shortages that we currently have are because people are currently working elsewhere” The reason why people are working elsewhere is because companies don't hire right from school. I graduated last March with a Heavy Equipment Operators license and no company would hire me because I had no experience. So I had to move to Alberta just to get experience to work in my own province. So they need to address the companies. There isn't a shortage of trades in the province, just a shortage of companies that will hire trades people right from college

  • John Smith
    April 30, 2012 - 09:29

    I think all the provinces are having trouble keeping up with the wages in alberta. As mentioned, we are not the lowest in canada, and are aproaching the mean. Alberta is a special case...not to mention they have to pay more because there is nothing else there to attract people.

  • Bri
    April 30, 2012 - 09:04

    People have to remember pay is also relative - do we want our rent prices to go up to $2700/month? I know they have risen quite a bit in the last little while but, they are still no where near the prices in Northern Alberta. Right now you can still rent a two bedroom apartment for $800-$900/month in St. John's. That's 3X less than Fort MacMurray's rent of $2700/month. How can you expect the same pay here as up there? Unless you are making 3X more -- your buying power has actually decrease not improved!. You might see the numbers in your bank account go higher but, they drop pretty quickly as well. I have a trade diploma; as well as a Engineering degree and I don't make the wages that trades people get in Alberta.

    • todd
      April 30, 2012 - 10:53

      It is not cheaper to live here anyone who is saying it is. I know first hand that it is extremely hard to get entry level work too. They need more entry level jobs in general for the trades and other fields. Everyone needs to start somewhere. Alberta allows this and that is why they are doing so good. Sure, yeah, fort mcmurray is expensive, but look into it a little deeper for a change! If you go to kijiji.ca and look up apartments in Edmonton where there is lots of trade work, or Calgary, you will see that the apartments are 800-1000 dollars a month. Many of these include all utilities and some even have swimming pools and workout rooms. So only talking about fort mcmurray everytime Alberta is mentioned is not a good comparison. Actually, I was just on kijiji and saw an 2 bedroom apartment in fort mcmurray for 950 which is what some people in Newfoundland are paying now. People in fort mcmurray also make a hell of a lot more. You get 16 dollars an hour to be a kitchen helper. Newfoundland will turn into a desert town if there continues to be nothing done about entry level positions and price of rent. It's becoming impossible to live here. Everyone is also very discriminatory as of late, and that is making it even worse.

    • todd
      April 30, 2012 - 11:41

      exactly! I want to add as well, it is very sad that employers are treating people with such disrespect who don't have experience. These people are the future of their companies and it is very wrong to not want to help them grow. I recently worked for a company that didn't help me with training at all, working with a program and systems I never used before. In my profession, companies seem to hire me, tell me I will be doing what it is I do, and I end up doing things I know nothing about, but that is how you learn. Bascially, it went far beyond my job description, and I did it for a year, something that was not at all easy. It caused trouble though when things didn't work right and it was busy...clients sometimes got upset, but it was beyond what I could do and I was not shown anything to fix it, plus the machines broke down on a daily basis. I was ultimately laid off as soon as a contract was lost and I feel like I didn't get much experience whatsoever because everyone was in a rush and I got very little help. The contract they lost was not due to me, but rather a bidding issue. They knew I was looking everywhere for a job to start in and they knew I wanted to learn more, but business was far more important than training. Maybe if they trained me better I could have been still there helping them. I was a very hard worker.

    • As a landlord with numerous properties
      April 30, 2012 - 20:48

      I would LOVE for NL rent prices to reach $2700 month. I am currently making a killing renting in the $1000 range, but I am hoping the oil boom will drive rental prices up.

  • Sparky
    April 30, 2012 - 08:56

    First of all; Wayne,please read-over your comments before posting,so you-[we] can understand what you have written. Wages are higher out-west but to rent an apartment in Alberta or in CBS thats a BIG difference! or to buy a house in CBS or in Alberta! Thats the big difference in wages,but if you worked in NFLD,you can be at a job for 2yrs that only takes 1yr to complete! & you`ll get paid!! "Topsil Rd-Kenmount Rd Overpass" Those guys have-it made! Ching-Ching!

  • Brad
    April 30, 2012 - 08:15

    Yea, but who wants to living in a city breathing in dust (Fort mac aka Fort Crack) or one of the most dangerous cities in Canada (Edmonton aka Deadmonton)

    • Alberta
      April 30, 2012 - 09:43

      I am offended by the comment on the Alberta cities. Fort Crack... Honestly... Alberta has been very generous to many hard working Newfoundlanders. Please remember the positives of this city are far more than the negative. Drugs are everywhere....

    • Christopher Chafe
      April 30, 2012 - 10:06

      Your ignorance about Alberta is disturbing. Edmonton and and Fort Mac and Calgary and GP have just as many Newfoundlanders living there than we have. As for comments about living is so much expensive there compared to here, have NEVER lived in Alberta.

    • Brad
      April 30, 2012 - 18:13

      Sorry, my comments aren't ignorant, they're the truth. Why do you think crack is the #1 drug of choice for the oil workers? Because its out of your system in 3 days whereas with weed takes up to 6 months to go. It's no coincidence that St. John's and Fort Mac had/have a crack cocaine and drug problem ever since the oil boom came to those cities. If you people have actually lived in both cities, St. john's was one of the safest cities in Canada, now it's crime rate is creeping up towards Halifax...why do you think people rob the stores you hear about on the news? Drugs! Some places have bigger drug problems than others. You're just trying to throw it under the rug. Lots of my friends went to Edmonton looking for jobs, in trades and other fields and they maybe lasted a year? Why? Very dangerous city. Obiouvsly theres a culture shock coming from small town Atlantic Canada, but Halifax and Saint John, NB are just drops in the pan comapred to the violence that goes in in Edmonton, Vancouver, and Winnipeg. Sorry, truth hurts.

  • wayne
    April 30, 2012 - 08:12

    It's absolutly true that wages are lower in Alberta than they are here is Nfld.......but we also need to llok at the cost of living. In Alberta taxes are much lower, gas is cheaper, food is cheaper, cars are cheaper....so making a couple of dollars more an hour in Alberta goes even farther than the same raise in pay would go here. The other side of the coin is housing ...housing cost considerably more than it does here. I'm sure that somewhere in he bowels of Stats Canada there are numbers that show what the real difference is beween living in Alberata and living here...taking all that into account

    • Bri
      April 30, 2012 - 09:15

      Sorry Wayne, I had not read your comment before making my own. I would also like to see the true numbers of the cost of living differences between Alberta and Newfoundland. The only thing I see right now is our cost of living going up and only people still able to afford the changes are the very small % of workers from NL in oil and gas. The high % of the workers are from away; who are not concerned about cost of living prices here.

  • W Bagg
    April 30, 2012 - 08:05

    I'm sure the companies here aren't making as much profit as those in Alberta too..............oh wait, alot of the major construction companies here are from out west,, look at the companies at Long Harbour. The companies here pay less so they can offer more affordable housing and construction cost vs western Canada.