June 16, 2008

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Sefton Memorial Lectures: The 2008 Sefton Lecture audio files of the Yates-Stanford debate on the CAW-Magna deal are now available at Sefton Memorial Lectures, CIRHR Library website. Transcripts of the debate are forthcoming.


Judge Grants Injunction Limiting CAW Protest at GM Canadian Headquarters: The blockade of G.M.'s National Office, which began on June 4th, ended by court order on Monday June 16th. General Motors was granted an injunction which limited the protesting at the Canadian headquarters to informational picketing with no more than 20 picketers at one time. The judge noted that GM's behaviour was almost “deceitful” during the bargaining process and that it did not come to court with “clean hands”.

Link: View Complete Copy of Judge's Decision Regarding CAW Blockade, June 15, 2008, CAW Local 222 website.


Doorey's Workplace Law Blog -- Thoughts on Canadian Labour & Employment Law for Students & Others: David Doorey, a professor at York University, recently began a blog on canadian labour and employment law. The June postings provide an analysis of the G.M. injunction decision and take a look at the contract language in the G.M. & CAW agreement as it applies to the recent shut down of the Oshawa truck plant.

LinksDoorey's Workplace Law Blog: see June 16th and June 9th postings; Here's the G.M. Collective Agreement Language, posted June 9, 2008 (3 pages, PDF); 2008 Big 3 Bargaining, Auto Community Fact Sheets, CAW website.


United Steelworkers Union Launches Advocacy Group for Live-in Caregivers: Partnering with Migrante Ontario, a grassroots advocacy group for migrant workers, the Steelworkers have set up a new association aimed at providing representation for home workers. The Independent Workers Association — Home Workers Section will offer a unique form of representation, based on a union model, to workers who are living in Canada under the Live-in Caregiver Program. The Association will offer services and benefits such as access to Steelworker dental offices and education programs, affordable legal services and health care. The goals of the association are to provide these workers with information as to their rights, to assist workers threatened with deportation, and to lobby for government regulation over caregiver recruitment agencies.

Link: “Home workers to get union help: For $10 a month they'll get a dental plan, legal counseling, insurance and other benefits,” by Nicholas Keung, Toronto Star June 11, 2008.


Reducing Work-Life ConflictThe Canadian Policy Research Network has provided the executive summary of a recent study on how Canadian employees and employers are coping with competing work and family demands. The study was made available earlier in the year on the Health Canada website.

LinksReducing Work-Life Conflict: What Works? What Doesn't? by Linda Duxbury et al., June 12, 2008 (30 pages, PDF); full report in html or PDF available from Environmental and Workplace Health, Health Canada website.


Who Bears the Risk in Defined-Benefit Pension Plans? A study released by the C.D. Howe Institute examined whether employees, employers or both, ultimately share the risk for poor investment performance in DB plans. The paper finds that the argument that sponsors are entitled to plan surpluses because they bear all of the downside risk of investment performance may not be true.

Link: Risky Assumptions: A Closer Look at the Bearing of Investment Risk in Defined-Benefit Pension Plans, by James E. Pesando, C.D. Howe Institute, June 12, 2008 (20 pages, PDF)


Company Investment in Pandemic Planning: The Schulich School of Business has released a research study that assesses the micro-economic impact of an influenza pandemic on individual companies. Presented at the World Conference on Disaster Management, the study focuses on how standard business performance metrics can justify investment in pandemic planning for individual companies.

Links: Making a Case for Investing in Pandemic Preparedness, Paper presented at the World Conference on Disaster Management, June 15-18, 2008, Toronto, Canada by Dr. Amin Mawani, (43 pages, PDF ); Slides of the presentation; “New Schulich study emphasizes need for corporate pandemic planning,” June 17, 2008, CNW Group.


IT Departments in the Financial Service Sector: A recent Deloitte report has found that IT departments in Canada's financial services industry need a stronger, more strategic voice at the decision-making table to be considered true partners to the business. In particular, the alignment between IT and the business enables constructive discussions on ways to reduce costs, improve internal operations and provide clear performance metrics. Workforce planning and talent management are examined.

Links: Running IT as a business: Survey of IT practices and trends in Canada 's financial services industry, Deloitte, June 17, 2008 (24 pages, PDF); Press release .


Human Capital Metrics: A recent report from the Conference Board in New York looks at how companies are using human capital metrics to align their people investments with business strategy. The report draws upon survey responses, a review of secondary sources, and case studies to illustrate how companies are employing human capital metrics and the potential impact of these new measurements.

Link: Strategic Human Capital Measures: Orientation, Accountability, and Communication, by Stephen Gates, June 2008, Conference Board New York, 28 pages, PDF). Available to the University of Toronto community for downloading from the Conference Board's e-Library (scroll down to find title)


“Good Work” and Stress: A paper from the Work Foundation that examines the relationship between changing occupations and workers' health and wellbeing, argues that the increasing number of professional and managerial jobs in developed countries explains why stress has become so prevalent and severe.

Links: Can ‘good work' keep employees healthy? Evidence from across the EU, by Rebecca Fauth and Alana McVerry, Work Foundation, June 16, 2008, (40 pages, PDF); Press release.


OECD Reviews Canada's Economy: An OECD review of Canada's economy has found that labour and capital have shifted rapidly from manufacturing towards the resource and service sectors, accounting for strong net job increases. Sustainable growth will depend upon longer working lifetimes as the population ages and addressing the problem of climate change, particularly in the energy sector.

Links: Economic Survey of Canada , 2008 Policy Brief, OECD, June 11, 2008 (12 pages, PDF);Economic survey of Canada 2008: Executive summary.


Job Market for Young People: The OECD has launched a series of reports featuring 16 countries, including Canada. Each report contains a survey of the main barriers to employment for young people and an assessment of the adequacy and effectiveness of existing measures to improve the transition from school to work.

Links: Jobs for Youth/Des Emplois pour les Jeunes: CANADA, OECD, June11, 2008, Summary (9 pages, PDF); Full text access available to download for U of T community (or subscribers to SourceOECD) at : Jobs for Youth/Des emplois pour les jeunes Canada. (175 pages, PDF)

Date posted: 
Monday, June 16, 2008