Ontario must seize the opportunity to make our changing workplaces fair

May 23, 2017

With today’s long-anticipated release of the Changing Workplaces Review report, the Canadian Labour Congress is calling on the Ontario government to go further than the report’s recommendations in order to raise standards for all workers, unionized or not.

“Today’s Changing Workplaces Review report acknowledges many of the key issues facing today’s workers, like unpredictable hours, job misclassification and barriers to joining a union,” said CLC President Hassan Yussuff. “However, the recommendations fall far short of what is needed to ensure fairness for all workers in Ontario.”

The CLC and other workers’ advocates were pleased to see the report recommend extending successorship rights in sectors such as home care, and broadening the right to unionize to new groups of workers, including agricultural workers. However, Yussuff said the CLC was particularly disappointed to see the report’s failure to recommend a minimum wage increase, basic access to unpaid sick days, or establishment of a card-check certification process to allow workers to unionize free from potential employer intimidation.

“Working people – particularly women, young workers and racialized workers – have been left behind as workplaces change. Now we have a chance to do the right thing and raise the bar for all workers. We must not squander this historic opportunity,” Yussuff said.

The Canadian Labour Congress is also urging other provinces to follow Ontario’s lead by reviewing and significantly reforming their own labour and employment standards to better protect all workers.

“Many of the issues faced by precarious workers in Ontario are issues we’re seeing across Canada. Ontario’s response to this report needs to be an ambitious roadmap that leads other provinces in the right direction to ensure fairness for all workers,” said Yussuff.

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