• Don’t forget child care

    What’s missing from all the leaks out of Ottawa is any hint that the budget will include the two programs that studies indicate would make the biggest difference in women’s lives and careers: a universal child care plan and use-it-or-lose-it paternity leave…. study after study indicates [that a national child care program ] would do the most to help women get back in the workforce, boost family incomes, improve early childhood skills for poor kids, add to government coffers, reduce child poverty — and, importantly, shrink the wage gap.

  • Wage wars, trade wars, and virtual economic reality

    Statistically, the provincial economy is the strongest in decades. Ontario’s 5.5 per cent unemployment rate is the lowest this century, economic growth has been best in the West since 2014, interest rates are low and the budget is balanced. Tell that to vulnerable workers. Or the venerable Ontario Chamber of Commerce… Even the latest uproar over the minimum wage appears to be a battle of perception versus performance — or virtual reality versus economic reality.

  • Is our health system destined to follow a U.S. trajectory?

    Growing gaps in drug and dental coverage, especially for working-class Canadians with no or inadequate employer benefits, means more lower-income Canadians will skip trips to the dentist or won’t fill prescriptions. Wealth gaps among the provinces means Canadians in some regions will have access to better and more timely care than those in other parts of the country.

  • Access to early childhood education services varies widely across Canada

    “As more children participate in kindergarten and pre-kindergarten, child care is left to top and tail the school day and fill in during holidays,” the report says. “This is a poor model that leaves too many families on wait lists for child care, destabilizes child care operators and creates split-shift, precarious jobs for early childhood educators.”

  • Human rights case hopes to give disabled people the freedom to live in small group homes

    A groundbreaking human rights case set to begin on Monday could help hundreds of Nova Scotians with disabilities move out of institutions and into small group homes, says a lawyer who has led a three-year-long effort to bring the cases before a formal hearing.

  • It’s past time to end academic streaming

    streaming — which puts kids into either academic or applied courses in high school — was supposed to be phased out in Ontario in 1999. Yet almost 20 years later, it’s still with us despite overwhelming evidence that it hurts rather than helps kids… studies also suggest teachers and guidance councillors actually push racialized and low-income students into taking applied courses. That perpetuates income-based disparities in educational outcomes.

  • Imagining an alternative to growing global inequality

    If the global growth in income inequality keeps on at its current pace, populist and nationalist trends around the world will flourish… 82 per cent of the wealth generated last year went to the richest 1 per cent of the global population. The poorest half of the world’s population — 3.7 billion people — saw no increase at all… the wealth of the billionaire class has risen by an annual average of 13 per cent since 2010, over six times faster than the wages of average workers.

  • Let residential school survivors share their stories

    Angela Shisheesh… would like her harrowing story of abuse to be part of the historical record, accessible to the public like those of many of her fellow victims. Yet because she, like so many others, settled her legal case before 2006, it is up the organizations responsible for her maltreatment to determine whether her testimony can be made public… To deny her and other victims a voice amounts to a sort of cultural erasure, an important aspect of the residential schools’ terrible impact.

  • ‘I walked out and the world had transformed’: As CAMH remakes itself, patients feel the difference

    TheStar.com – News/Insight – As walls come down and new buildings go up, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health is focusing on research and […]

  • Alberta’s minimum wage hike working despite gloomy predictions

    If an inexpensive meal in a restaurant can only be provided on the backs of people slaving away in the kitchen for next to nothing maybe we should consider a restaurant that charges a bit more. If we really need qualified, caring people to look after our children and our elders shouldn’t we be prepared to pay them what that is worth to us? And what about all those women who keep hotel rooms clean and tidy? Are we getting a good room rate because they don’t earn enough to properly support their families?