That tricky wage thing

You know me. I love to stir the pot a bit. The following table (taken from Stats Can) shows the average annual employment income (from the 2006 Census) for three jobs: general doctors, senior government managers and everyone.  These figures are for those that worked full time/full year.  The spread between the docs and everyone else is indeed well above the national spread (docs versus everyone else).  The average GP in NB makes 220% more than the average worker compared to a spread of only 189% across Canada but the spread between senior government managers is even higher. The average big wig in the civil service (fed, prov and local combined) makes 116% more than the average NBer.

Now we have to view the GP data with some suspician because it is reported employment income and since many doctors are actually incorporated businesses what they report as employment income does not necessarily translate into total effective income.  However, the same can be said for docs across Canada as well. 

Minister Murphy wants the docs to take a two year pay freeze.  Probably reasonable given there is a recession going on and that they are alread paid far more relative to the average NBer than in most other provinces but I guess they could tell the minister to turn the guns on the civil service as well.

 

General Practitioners and Family Physicians

Senior Government Managers

Everybody

The Spread

Docs

G-Men

CAN

$148,109

$89,025

$51,221

ð

+189%

+74%

NL

175,428

67,417

45,223

      ð

+288%

+49%

NS

127,135

82,987

43,403

      ð

+193%

+91%

NB

132,320

89,435

41,412

      ð

+220%

+116%

QC

139,681

82,235

45,157

      ð

+209%

+82%

ONT

164,394

100,553

55,626

      ð

+196%

+81%

MAN

150,445

78,270

43,362

      ð

+247%

+81%

SK

149,296

71,373

42,298

      ð

+253%

+69%

AB

133,970

93,126

57,961

      ð

+131%

+61%

BC

124,568

86,544

50,855

      ð

+145%

+70%

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11 Responses to That tricky wage thing

  1. Note to self. Do a spell check on posts.

  2. Rob says:

    I have a hard time seeing the words “two year wage freeze” on the Fredericton Chamber’s physician recruitment website.

  3. Scott Mackay says:

    I agree, rob. anyway, good luck with that NB.

  4. You give us numbers that combine wages for federal, local and provincial senior public servants, and then conclude, based on those numbers, that we ought to “to turn the guns on” the provincial civil service.

    The flaw in this reasoning should be readily apparent.

  5. To be more accurate, I said the doctors might ask the Minister to turn the guns on the senior civil service managers. I don’t want anyone to turn any guns on anyone else. I have a more nuanced view of public sector wages than you imply.

  6. Anonymous says:

    @David Campbell

    By the same line of thought, they could ask the Minister to turn the guns on universities, community colleges, and so on. All you have to do is show a table with those numbers in the same post. And it is interesting that you make an assumption about wages for the entire public sector based only on the salaries of senior government management. It would be like suggesting that the public service should earn more because their wages are significantly lower than the average salary of managers in the private sector.

  7. Again, some people love to read between the lines. I tongue-in-cheek mentioned the senior managers in the civil service (and I can’t get breakdowns from the Census by fed/prov/local) because they would be working with Minister Murphy on the wage freeze plan. Why don’t you google my blog going back five years and see if I spend any time criticizing public service wage levels in general.

  8. Anonymous says:

    @David Campbell

    “Why don’t you google my blog going back five years”
    > David, you should not expect occasional readers to Google your blog going back five years every time you make a statement. If you suspect that “some people” could read between lines, it would be advisable that you provide links to previous posts related to the topic. In fact, when you say “but I guess they could tell the minister to turn the guns ON THE CIVIL SERVICE as well” (highlight is mine), it doesn’t sound like a tongue-in-cheek statement or that it refers to SENIOR MANAGEMENT in the civil service. I don’t know much about your readership, but I think that it would be safe to assume that the majority are occasional readers like me.

  9. mikel says:

    It seems pretty clear that when David says “civil service” that he means ‘senior government managers’, since thats what he shows in the chart. It’s only if you don’t look at the chart, or think that he’s talking about two different things that anybody would make the assumption that he’s NOT referring to senior government managers.

    This is a guy who works for a living and doesnt’ get paid to publish the blog, so to state that he should reference almost any statement that can be taken out of context with a footnote to a previous blog (amongst thousands) is pretty unrealistic. This has nothing to do with occasional readership, its pretty clear what he means.

    Splitting hairs over two words is a bit much, especially since it CAN easily apply to the whole civil service. It’s a recession, etc., and since the civil service are about to benefit from tax cuts then by all means there should be a wage freeze. That’s not EVERYBODY of course, because as we know home care workers are amongst the worst paid in the province, but anybody that thinks from this blog that David is talking about freezing wages of people making just above minimum wage, well, its not HIM that needs to edit, because thats just ridiculous.

  10. Anonymous says:

    “when David says “civil service” that he means ’senior government managers’, since thats what he shows in the chart”
    >> It looks like I have to go back to university and take that Logic 101 course!

    Mikel, please don’t take it personally but David doesn’t need somebody to defend him. Now, if somebody is splitting hairs it’s you (“This is a guy who works for a living and doesnt’ get paid to publish the blog”).

    In fact, my comment was intended to be constructive, meaning that a comment like that may be taken the wrong way by some groups (I lived several years in Atlantic Canada and I know very well what I am talking about). The best proof of that is that the reaction showed that it touched a nerve.

  11. Anonymous says:

    @mikel

    “when David says “civil service” that he means ’senior government managers’, since thats what he shows in the chart”
    >> It looks like one of us has to go back to university and take that Logic 101 course! (and I am sure it’s not me)

    Mikel, please don’t take it personally but David doesn’t need somebody to defend him. Now, if somebody is splitting hairs it’s you (”This is a guy who works for a living and doesnt’ get paid to publish the blog”).

    In fact, my comment was intended to be constructive, meaning that a comment like that may be taken the wrong way by some groups (I lived several years in Atlantic Canada and I know very well what I am talking about). The best proof of that is that the reaction showed that it touched a nerve.

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