Posted by: Sylvia | November 10, 2011

Jobs? A Donation?

Dear Nycole,

If you want to start solving problems in the job market, a very good place to start would be with examining employer adherence to labour and business standards, and auditing companies for the taxes they are not paying. There are a LOT of them. Many workers are forced into unethical actions they would not take, just to keep food on the table, and this is becoming common knowledge.

Many smaller businesses are owned and operated by New Canadians who are not adhering to our standards. I have worked for several for very short periods of time. They rely on holding companies and the threat of job loss to screw workers out of their pay, statutory holidays, and overtime. One company at which I interviewed wanted to pay me $9 an hour for a 50-hour work week. That company and another I worked at for a week, were reliant on government funding (truck driving schools), so should be shining examples of how our government works for us, not the worst examples of how it does not.

This makes it very difficult for smaller long-standing Canadian companies, because their honesty and integrity are challenged by association; e.g., if three roofing or HVAC companies do shoddy work, then they must all do shoddy work.

Then there are the American companies who were allowed to come up here and start businesses, then bleed profits back down to the US before packing it in – we did nothing to hold them to the agreements that would build up our economy.

Further, Labour Standards Board makes the worker lay a complaint before they will investigate, which is an automatic threat of job loss, plus it takes a very long time because frankly, workers seem only important to the politicians at voting time, and not important at all to the bureaucrats who will still have their offices beyond the next election, thus there are not enough staff to process the overwhelming number of cases before them. Though helpful in the long run, the problem is that we have business laws which we do not enforce, and it impacts our whole economy.

Employment Insurance has a system that works so poorly that though an employer must send a Record of Employment to EI, once it arrives it is only used for statistical analysis. It is up to the worker to take their copy to EI for entering into the system, and if they can’t get it from their employer, which has become a common problem, they have to go to Labour Standards to lay a complaint. This is a costly, badly run system for any worker whose application does not run smoothly.

Further, the government allows unaccredited private colleges to operate whose students have no chance of finding work, and those people are competing with graduates from accredited colleges who can’t get work because they have no experience. Then everyone is competing with new university grads (over 40% of whom are functionally illiterate, by the latest findings) who are taking the lowest level jobs to find work. Meanwhile, there are no programs providing incentives for mature workers, and no quotas for whites at all. There is a reverse racism occurring under the guise of political correctitude.

Government is wasting a great deal of its money funding educational programs to workers who will never work in those fields, because no-one has the sense to use the old Canada Manpower model, where counsellors and program developers were trained to know where the actual needs were in the job market and, because they worked with people who seriously wanted work, identify unemployed workers who could fill those needs. Training was linked to jobs, and the employers were directly involved in the programs. But sending hundreds of people for social worker assistance (for example) is ridiculous when people with BSW degrees cannot find work.

I have seen the standard of living sink rapidly over the past 15 years because of allowing advertising for candidates in languages other than English and French. This used to be illegal, and was seen as counterproductive for society in general. In Brampton, it can be very difficult to find work without speaking Punjabi, and many Canadians have left Brampton because of it. Further, New Canadians are finding it much harder to find jobs than ever, spending much to emigrate, then having to go back home when their dreams are not realized. I have lost several friends this way. Why is the government letting in immigrants when there are not enough jobs or infrastructure for the people who are already here? Especially when many create businesses that do not adhere to our laws, and relying on holding companies to cover a multitude of sins.

The whole system needs a lot more than money to support the NDP; it needs a overhaul. Funding should be rerouted from redundant training programs that just keep the colleges’ staff employed, and put into the enforcement of business and labour standards. Immigration should be slowed down until the economy has been corrected. Economists know that a closed economy is the most prosperous for all; I urge you to push for that end.

And I can’t send you a donation because I’ve been under or unemployed since January 2010.

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