I just got my T4 slip this week for the 2004 tax year. I thought I would reach a career milestone this year, but poor weather cancelled many flights for part of the year, so I came up $600 short of the poverty line for my area. The company I work for isn't even on this list.
Low pay is normal for flying jobs. Only the higher paying companies are on that list. You may look at the top end of the Air Canada pay scale and think that is the payoff, but look what it takes to get there. The basic commercial multi-engine IFR qualification will cost at least $30,000, with no guarantee of a job at the end. This How it Works site mentions the training, the medical requirements and the myths about salary, but it doesn't include a Canadian reality. In some countries a newly qualified pilot can go straight to the airlines to fly a jet. In Canada there are vast murky areas of aviation to be navigated before those airlines will even look at you. WestJet, a discount carrier with a Boeing 737 fleet, requires 4000 hours of flight time from new applicants. The How It Works site leaves out the low end jobs with six hours of training, not six weeks.
Pilots are typically paid for flight hours, so when pre and post flight responsibilities and waiting around time are taken into account (and there is always waiting around time -- why do you think I blog?) a brand new pilot is lucky to make minimum wage. And he doesn't even get free cheeseburgers. Even in the United States, where the aviation situation is better, pilots starting at some regional airlines qualify for food stamps.
Like anything else, it comes down to supply and demand. There are lots of people who want to work as pilots, and a sufficient number of people hold the minimum qualifications for any job opening below heavy jet captain, that a company need only pay enough to keep a pilot alive.