Archive for the ‘Policy Context’ Category

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The benefits to raising Ontario’s minimum wage are tangible

Saturday, August 25th, 2018

Increasing the minimum wage is one of the most effective means we have of assisting the economically disadvantaged. It puts a new, higher floor under all wages, including those earned by millions of Ontarians living just above the poverty line. The benefits are tangible: higher household incomes; increased consumer spending; lower workplace turnover and absenteeism. The few studies claiming to show job loss from minimum wage increases have been debunked.

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Labour force participation, immigration headline OECD’s Canada report

Tuesday, July 24th, 2018

… the OECD recommended, among other things, that Canada invest more in affordable child care, raise its retirement age and do a better job matching immigration applicants’ qualifications and experience to specific skills needs… “Get people to work longer or retire later, increasing female participation – that kind of thing has a bigger effect than changes in feasible amounts of immigration,”

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What does progressive trade policy look like?

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2018

Existing democratic mechanisms are proving inadequate to channel popular discontent in positive, evidence-based directions. Instead, ugly and increasingly dangerous forms of right-wing populism are capitalizing on discontent, creating a platform for inconsistent, arbitrary and ultimately destructive policy responses… Into this ferment, progressives must inject an ambitious, honest and pragmatic vision of how to manage international trade, capital and human flows in ways that protect and enhance living standards, equality and the environment.

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Ottawa must close ‘tax gap’ and stop multi-billion-dollar rip-off

Friday, June 29th, 2018

Tax evasion is not a victimless crime. The victims are all of us. Lost revenue to which the government is entitled pays for an already over-burdened health care system, infrastructure more than overdue for replacement or repair, the aircraft, vessels and equipment provided to Canadian troops, and much more… there is mounting evidence of the extent of an unconscionable problem and increasing urgency to address it.

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What America forgets: Competition drives innovation

Saturday, June 9th, 2018

Competition in an advanced economy leads to more science, more advanced engineering and better products… Raising tariffs simply encourages a more insular United States and reduces access to these improvements. Less competition in the technology realm means that it becomes easier to emphasize cheaper instead of better. Tariffs hold everyone back from advancements in technology.

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Cutting off workers from benefits at 65 unconstitutional, human rights tribunal rules

Tuesday, June 5th, 2018

In 2006, Ontario passed a law that ended the ability of employers to terminate workers when they turned 65. But the province’s Human Rights Code and Employment Standards Act still allow employers to cut workers off benefits when they turn 65, which the tribunal decision called a violation of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The decision means employers will no longer be able to rely on the Human Rights Code and Employment Standards Act to justify excluding workers over 65 from their benefits plans, and will make them vulnerable to lawsuits if they do.

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Trump’s beggar-thy-neighbour trade strategy is anything but foolish

Tuesday, June 5th, 2018

… for decades the United States played by the rules; everyone grew richer and the United States grew richer faster than everyone else. In the postwar world, the United States’ support of free trade was a key – perhaps the key – to its rise to global economic leader. Nowadays, however, the game has changed. Where once the goal of the United States was to rise to global hegemony, today its goal is to maintain that dominance.

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Ontario divided: Anger, economics and the fault lines that could decide the election

Saturday, May 19th, 2018

Over the past decade, Ontario has created 580,000 new positions, as measured by the increase in employed people. Metro Toronto, which accounts for less than half of the province’s population, nabbed 80 per cent of those jobs. Ottawa accounts for another 10 per cent. The rest of Ontario, with millions of people from Cornwall to Thunder Bay, accounts for the remaining 10 per cent.
The situation is ripe for a populist to rip through the province and attract voters by exploiting the grievances of those who have been left out of the boom.

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Can Canada reinvent the plastic economy?

Thursday, May 3rd, 2018

Stop the irrational level of plastic waste; Systematically ensure reduction of unnecessary products; Ensure reuse and recycling – with thoughtful cradle-to-grave product design; Replace petroleum inputs with benign materials… Environment Minister Catherine McKenna has already called for the G7 to develop a “zero plastics waste charter,” and there is talk of a global treaty… there must be more than a photo op, a news release and a general call for global action.

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A measly $292.50 that could have changed it all

Saturday, April 21st, 2018

“The Supreme Court failed to rule that Provinces have no right to erect interprovincial tariff barriers. This is indeed unfortunate news for Canadian consumers, but a relief for provinces who have allowed fiscal priorities to supersede consumer choice, for years. For the agrifood sector, the decision would have had tremendous significance.” … Some favorable to the current regime believe the Comeau ruling could have triggered a race to the bottom, in terms of health standards and food safety. Such an argument is nonsense. Risk management practices in the Canadian agrifood sector are exemplary.

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