Archive for the ‘Economy/Employment’ Category

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No sign minimum wage hike was ‘job killer’ Doug Ford says it was

Thursday, October 25th, 2018

Now that Premier Doug Ford’s government is scrapping nearly every change the Liberals made to the employment laws and freezing the minimum wage until October 2020, it’s time to assess whether the claims that it’s killing jobs and devastating the economy are true. The Ontario Chamber of Commerce predicted (in what it called an independent economic analysis) that the reforms would put 185,000 jobs at risk. The fact is Ontario’s unemployment rate over the past year is as good as it has been this century.

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Ministry of Labour puts hold on proactive workplace inspections, internal memo says

Thursday, October 25th, 2018

Employment standards inspections deal with basic workplace issues such as unpaid wages and overtime. Proactive inspections, which are initiated at the behest of the ministry, are far more effective at recovering unpaid wages, including public holiday pay and overtime, than when individual workers file complaints, according to the ministry’s own data… the move is motivated by a significant backlog of employment standards claims filed by workers — exacerbated by a “discretionary spending freeze and subsequent suspension of recruitment” at the ministry.

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Ontario is open for business, but on the back of vulnerable workers

Wednesday, October 24th, 2018

… the Tories are cancelling a $1 increase in the minimum hourly wage scheduled for Jan. 1, 2019, eliminating two paid sick days for workers, and dropping the requirement that employers pay part-time and casual staff at the same rate as full-time workers doing the same job. The government is also repealing measures that would have given employees the right to request a change to their schedule or work location, and to be paid for three hours of work if a scheduled shift is cancelled without 48 hours’ notice. Workers will also lose the right to refuse to work on days they weren’t scheduled to.

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Minimum wage hikes help reduce income inequality, report shows

Wednesday, October 24th, 2018

“Minimum wage increases in most Canadian provinces from the mid-2000s onwards have had a significant impact on wage growth at the lower end of the distribution, at both the national and provincial levels,”… The report also found that while wage gains for women have exceeded those for men since 1997, there remains a “considerable gap” in the wages paid for men and women.

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Ontario government to freeze Liberals’ minimum wage hike and roll back labour-friendly rules

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2018

Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government announced officially on Tuesday that it plans to repeal chunks of the previous government’s Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act amid pushback from business owners who argued many of the changes were too costly, forcing them to raise prices and cut staff… The government will also cut the section that forces employers to pay part-time and casual staff at the same rate as full-time workers doing the same work, but said it will maintain the requirement for equal pay on the basis of sex.

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The secret world of corporate tax avoidance

Thursday, October 18th, 2018

… do large Canadian corporations avoid billions of dollars of taxes each year? You bet they do. And other taxpayers – you and I – have to ante up the shortfall. Canadian tax rules are in desperate need of repair. If the federal Department of Finance is not up to the task, the government should appoint a fair-minded and non-partisan group of tax experts to do the work.

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Will Canadians accept a carbon tax?

Thursday, October 18th, 2018

… with Canadians expressing a desire for government leadership, a substantial amount of concern about climate change, and moderate support across much of the country for a carbon price, the time may be right for bold action along the lines of the national carbon tax currently under discussion. No policy will be popular with all Canadians, but the data point to a reasonable chance that a carbon tax will be acceptable to the majority.

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Approaching carbon tax one reason now is a good time for broad-based tax reform

Tuesday, October 16th, 2018

… what if the carbon tax was implemented in tandem with broad-based tax reform? Could the two reinforce each other? Not only would there be that much more in the way of revenues with which to make meaningful cuts in corporate and personal tax rates, but the cuts might then be deep enough to make possible a more radical reform of the tax code than might otherwise be attempted. Sometimes the best policy is also the most practical.

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Protesters urge Ford to keep worker protections, minimum wage bump in place

Tuesday, October 16th, 2018

In addition to increasing the province’s minimum wage, Bill 148 provided two paid, job-protected emergency leave days for all workers, increased holiday entitlement, mandated equal pay for casual and part-time workers doing the same job as full-time employees, enshrined, improved scheduling protections and boosted protections for temp agency workers… About one-third of Ontario’s workforce are vulnerable workers in low-wage, precarious employment… “Our message is, Premier Ford, do the right thing.”

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Stephen Harper comes across as banal in effort to claim mantle of populism

Thursday, October 11th, 2018

… if the populist is famously “for the people,” it invites the question of who is against — the Them that is supposedly menacing Us. The populist is never short of Thems: elites, foreigners, racial minorities, “globalists” — or in Harper’s (borrowed) formulation, the cosmopolitan “Anywheres” who owe no allegiance to nation-states, move between homes in New York, London and Singapore, and hanker after a world without borders… whom Harper is convinced now control “all the main traditional political parties.”

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