December 19, 2011

Know Your Rights at Work

In it's recent report Divided We Stand: Why Inequality Keeps Rising, the OECD found that "weaker employment protection" has been one of the drivers of growing inequality.

The folks at the Workers' Action Centre have been working diligently to correct that problem in Ontario. They have pressed successfully for more provincial employment standards officers and better legislation to protect temporary agency workers.

With the Christmas and New Year's holidays approaching, the Workers' Action Centre has put out a reminder that temporary agency workers are entitled by law to paid statutory holidays. Unfortunately many such workers do not have that right respected.

If you do not already have a copy of the Workers' Action Centre resource guide, Your Rights at Work: Action Guide for Fair Employment, why not download a copy today.

December 12, 2011

Health, Not Health Care -- Time to Change the Conversation

"It is time for a new conversation about health in this province ... and very little of that conversation is about health care."
Dr. Arlene King, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health, issued her annual report on December first (2011) -- Health, Not Health Care -- Changing the Conversation.

This one is a must read.

With Ontario dealing with a $16 billion deficit and the economy on the ropes, public policy appears straight-jacketed by the McGuinty Government's determination to hold public spending growth to no more than 1% a year -- while allowing health care and education spending to grow by 3% annually. And it appears the Government is unwilling to consider ways to bring in more revenue.

Dr. King's report offers a timely word of caution for such an approach:

December 7, 2011

Common Ground: Moving forward on poverty reduction in Ontario

On Monday (December 5, 2011) the 25 in 5 Network for Poverty Reduction released its third annual report on Ontario's poverty reduction strategy. Titled Common Ground: A Strategy for Moving Forward on Poverty Reduction, this is the first report where there has actually been data available to see what impact Ontario's poverty reduction strategy has had on poverty rates.
The lesson is that we can reduce poverty and inequality -- even in tough economic times. It takes policy commitments matched by strong public investment.
The good news is that in the first year of the Provincial Strategy,