Union advantage? Most workers in Niagara don’t see it that way

Why don’t people always act in their own collective self-interest? This classic puzzle in sociological analysis led us to question why so many workers – even the most precarious among them – were so disinterested in unions as a means to achieve higher pay and better working conditions.  If [...]

By |2023-01-25T12:05:52-05:00Jan 25, 2023|

Way Back on Land Back: Company colonies in Early North American Capitalism

The US 1619 project is aimed at making visible the erasure of Black history and contributions of Africans to early America. Seldom noted, it was the Virginia Company that directed the labour of Africans first arriving on the White Lion that year – Virginia was not merely a generic [...]

By |2023-01-18T22:01:12-05:00Jan 18, 2023|

Corporations that fund food banks do so out of self-interest

Food banks delude the public into thinking food insecurity and hunger are being managed.  Food banks allow governing authorities off the hook. Instead of passing laws and regulations and developing policies to reduce poverty and low wages, governments contribute funding to food banks.

By |2022-09-07T12:02:17-04:00Sep 7, 2022|

A global platform left the country and local gig workers were left stranded

Gig platforms have tried hard to create the image of gig workers as side-hustlers, part-timers, or those who use the work as a hobby to make extra money and who are thus free to hop from one platform to another whenever they want. If gig workers are deemed to be so autonomous and independent, what happens to them when a global platform leaves?

By |2021-12-15T13:06:36-05:00Dec 15, 2021|

For the People? Right-Wing Populism and Employment Standards in Ontario, Canada

Doug Ford’s right-wing populism emerged in relation to the material conditions of precariousness that had escalated in the years following the 2008 financial crisis. It tapped into the insecurities of working-class and middle-class voters generated through years of growing inequality, stagnant wages, declining unionization, and the deterioration of public services and institutions. Invoking an old neoliberal trope, its solution to the crisis included measures that would make Ontario “open for business,” including employment standards reforms that undermined basic employment protections for workers in the province. While proclaiming intentions to protect “the people” from “the elite,” Ford’s populism served to sustain and enhance capitalist interests by legitimating legislation that undermines the security of an already precarious workforce.

By |2021-01-20T15:21:07-05:00Jan 20, 2021|
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