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Employment and labour
The rise of the “gig economy” and on-demand work through platforms like Uber has ignited public debate about precarious work and what makes a “good job.” Policymakers have been slow to respond, partly because the lack of data on the scale and impacts of precarious work makes it easier to skate around the issues.
The rise of the ‘gig economy’ and on-demand work using online platforms like Uber and Skip the Dishes has ignited public debate about precarious work and what makes a “good job.” Precarious work is not a new phenomenon, nor is it limited to the gig economy—but we don’t know just how widespread a problem it has become, mainly because Statistics Canada does not collect timely data on many of its dimensions.
The Convoy that took over Ottawa for a month last year just met outside Winnipeg this past weekend. While the right to protest is an essential part of our democracy, it is important to look critically at this movement that has harboured white supremacist, libertarian and in some cases even fascist beliefs. These ideas have originated most recently in the USA, but have a long and odious history elsewhere in the world.
A version of this article was published in the Winnipeg Free Press January 11, 2022
Living expenses in BC, particularly for housing and food, are continuing to rise for families, meaning higher wages are required for working families to afford their basic needs.
VANCOUVER - The living wage has gone up to $24.08 an hour in Metro Vancouver for 2022—the highest increase since the living wage was first calculated in 2008 and significantly higher than the rate of inflation, this year’s Living Wage Update report shows. And for the first time, Victoria’s living wage, $24.29 an hour, is higher than Metro Vancouver’s because of the increased cost of food on Vancouver Island.
As the Canadian workplace confronts the “great resignation,” “quiet-quitting” and labour shortages in general, the question of what employers can do to attract and retain workers has become ubiquitous. While wages and benefits loom large in workers decisions on whether to stay put or move on, the amount of power (or lack thereof) workers have within their respective workplace must also been seen as a contributing factor in workers’ employment decisions.
Previously published in the Winnipeg Free Press Sept 1, 2022 September marks the end of summer, the return to school and Labour Day, an opportune time to step back and reflect upon the world of work, and the well-being of all workers. Labour-force issues are never static, but the past three years have been unprecedented in terms of what workers have faced. The coronavirus pandemic saw public-health concerns drive the shutdown of major sections of the economy, here in Canada and globally. Millions of Canadian workers were forced out of their jobs.
The 2022 living wage update comes alongside the fastest increases to the cost of living seen since the early 1980s. These increases are placing financial pressure on low-wage workers, amplifying calls for the adoption of a living wage in Manitoba.