By Claire Renic

Tim Hortons was put under the national spotlight when it became known that employees at a franchise in Ontario were given documents outlining changes to company policy after the provincial minimum wage increase.

The memo, sent by franchise owners Ron Joyce Jr. and Jeri-Lynn Horton-Joyce (the married son and daughter of the company’s co-founders), announced they were cutting perks like paid breaks, paid benefits and other incentives. The memo then asked employees to sign the document, acknowledging their understanding.

But how are the conditions at the Tim Hortons at the Red River College Exchange District Campus?

According to an employee who spoke to The Projector on the condition of anonymity, new workers are started at minimum wage and get raises based on good performance.

“It’s really up to management,” the employee said. “We get discounts on food and coffee, plus my co-workers are good.”

A media spokesperson for the brand said the decision to give employees extra incentives like extra pay for working on their birthday or paid breaks is entirely up to that location’s franchise owner. The management at the Princess St. location was unavailable for comment.

Under the new rules at the franchise in Cobourg, Ontario, employees lose incentives for working on their birthday, for working at least six months without taking a sick day. Employees with over five years of service under their belts will have to pay 50 per cent of the cost of benefits and employees between six months to five years of service will have to pay 75 cents.

Non-union workers in Manitoba, like the employees at Tim Hortons, are covered under the Employment Standards Act. The act doesn’t require employers to give workers any breaks other than eating periods.