Brantford City Council will ban the use of temporary staffing agencies, the first such stand to be taken in Ontario.
Led by Councillor Brian Van Tilborg and unanimously passed by all council members, the City is also urging the Province to make changes to provincial labour laws that govern the use of temporary workers.
Councillor John Sless, who supported the motion, says temp agencies “are feeding off folks who are easy prey.”
He says there are two significant issues with temp workers – those who seem to be in ‘long-term temp jobs’ – a contradiction in terms — and those who are constantly shifting from one job to another.Read more
Until recently, Canadian austerity proponents have not paid a lot of attention to basic income. But now that governments are taking it up, things are changing.
The one influential study from the right, the Fraser Institute Report (January 2015), has become a major resource for conservative policy analysts appearing in the media these days. They are repeatedly defining basic income in its right wing version, as if that’s what it must be. There has been no comparable study from progressive analysts to help us counter this trend.Read more
Ontario MPP, France Gélinas, says a well-designed basic income policy could help women stay home if they want to take care of their aging parents.
Gélinas, an MPP with Ontario’s New Democratic Party (NDP) and a health critic for her party, says women in the 50-65 age bracket often find themselves in the difficult position of placing their mother or father in a long term care home.
“Many women – and let’s be honest, it’s mostly women who would choose this – would love to stay home and take care of their moms and dads,” says Gélinas.Read more
Progressive Conservative MPP, Julia Munro, says the very nature of work is changing so rapidly that societies are having difficulty figuring out how to respond.
Munro, who is the PC critic for the government’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, says the “nature of work has changed so much.”
“Everything has always been pinned on our work – our employment. It’s the way we have defined ourselves for so long,” she says.Read more
By Robin Boadway and Roderick Benns
For too many years Canada has danced around what is perhaps the central issue in social policy development. What are the most basic needs of Canadian citizens?
If one were to read a recent report from the Mowat Centre called Working Without a Net: Rethinking Canada’s Social Policy in the New Age of Work one wouldn’t think it was money.
The new report written by Sunil Johal and Jordann Thirgood attempts to make sense of of the real problems facing labour markets in a thorough way, particularly the increasingly precarious nature of work.Read more
By Sara Mojtehedzadeh
The Toronto Star
There’s no easy way to summarize what 26-year-old Joan Lillian Wilson does for a living, other than to say it involves a lot of slashes: graphic designer/photographer/activist. Part-time/contract/volunteer. No union/benefits/pension.
Sound familiar? Then you, too, might be a part of the city’s invisible workforce. It’s composed of independent contractors, part-time employees, self-employed entrepreneurs, and creative types — a hitherto disparate group that Toronto activists are now seeking to unite.
The Canadian Press (CBC News)
They're part-time employees without health benefits or pensions who work split shifts at a number of different locations each week. From one paycheque to the next, their income fluctuates, as do their hours.
These aren't workers hustling behind fast-food counters or holding down other McJobs. They're aspiring librarians, often with at least one master's degree.
A university degree is not a get-out-of-jail-free card from the perils of insecure employment. Precarious work, often associated with service-sector jobs, is spreading to jobs that were once considered realms of stable employment with benefits and pensions to boot.Read more
By Rob Rainer
One of the biggest worries about adopting a Basic Income Guarantee in Canada is its so-called ‘work disincentive.’
We have all grown up believing that in order to eat, to be housed, to be secure, we must work. And who has not thought that there is a linear relationship between work effort and well-being?
This correlation is now untrue, if ever it were. Countless people work hard yet struggle daily to survive, while others may not work at all yet enjoy the most sumptuous cuisine and the most luxurious surroundings. As has been said, if hard work equated with wealth, every woman in Africa would be a millionaire.Read more
By Roderick Benns
Publisher of Leaders and Legacies, a social purpose news site
In this series, we examine the value of a basic income guarantee to various sectors of society. In today’s column, we look at three reasons why it’s a great policy idea even for people who already have jobs.
A basic income should be Canada’s next great social program. Even if you are a fully employed person, there are many reasons to support a basic income guarantee. We’ll talk about just three of them below.
But first, what is a basic income guarantee?Read more
Roderick Benns recently interviewed Nick Taylor, a project manager who has worked around the world on both public and private endeavours, from roads, railways, airports, and buildings, taking ideas from plans to reality. He is helping develop ways for people in Vancouver to discuss and engage with the idea of basic income.
Part two of two
Benns: What about a basic income guarantee makes it a social justice issue?
Taylor: Basic Income is a means to provide choice as to how people meet the security of their basic needs. Providing people the independence to decide what those basic needs are, along with unconditional cash, is the way we provide that dignity. Everyone I've talked with understands that. There is a one in six chance of being in poverty in Vancouver, and those are odds that no rational person would accept.Read more