Low wage work…

     June 17, 2014

Toronto Star – Sara Mojtehedzadeh
Ontario’s ‘eye-popping’ shift to low-wage work 

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and author of the most recent study of precarious employment has concluded that in the last two decades the low wage workforce has skyrocketed by a whopping 94% and that working for minimum wage is now five times higher than in 1997.  Additionally 50.5% are now working less than 40 hours per week.  The wage problem is usually accompanied by a number of other characteristics:  erratic schedules, dwindling hours, unpaid leave and constant stress.  http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2015/06/15/ontarios-eye-popping-shift-to-low-wage-work.html   CCPA full report – Shelia Block   A Higher Standard https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/higher-standard  (A 30 page downloadable pdf)

Globe and Mail – Gloria Galloway
Canadian First Nations becoming less prosperous, report says

The report is due tomorrow but preliminary indications are that the report will say that key economic prosperity indicators are moving in the wrong direction and Aboriginals are losing ground.  The Aboriginal Progress Report is going to say that Aboriginals on reserves have not made improvements in the years between 2006 and 2011 on core economic indicators such as employment, secondary school completion and quality of homes.  http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/canadian-first-nations-becoming-less-prosperous-report-says/article24990367/

Canadian Living – Jill Buchner
Homelessness and prison- There’s a flaw in our justice system. People are going to prison and ending up homeless.

It seems that release from custody brings at times some crippling obstacles in that while many women in prison say they have a home to go to after the halfway house, many in fact wind up on the streets or with agencies that cater to street people.  Says Amber Kellen of John Howard Toronto:  “Even for those who have short stays in provincial jails (the average stay in Ontario is roughly one month), people can come out to find their home and all of their belongings gone because they’ve been unable to pay rent.”  http://www.canadianliving.com/life/community/homelessness_and_prison.php

The Guardian (UK) – Chandra Bozelko
Prisons that withhold menstrual pads humiliate women and violate basic rights

The author spent six years in a US prison (York Correctional Institution in Niantic, Connecticut).  The article details the life of a sanitary pad, how they are distributed, how frequently, what they cost in the prison commissary and why the shortages.  Cheap you say?  Not entirely.  There are other reasons for the humiliation.  http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jun/12/prisons-menstrual-pads-humiliate-women-violate-rights

National Newswatch – Mike Blanchfield, Canadian Press
Civil society coalition takes aim at Harper government for stifling dissent

Groups understood as “civil societies” or groups pre-occupied with the common good on a variety of issues, domestic as well as international, have voiced concern that the work in which they engage is censored by the Harper government when the conclusions are not palatable.  Under the banner of Voices/Voix,  Amnesty International, Greenpeace and Oxfam are among the 200 such organizations and over 500 individuals who subscribe to a new report witnessing “cases in which individuals, organizations and institutions have been intimidated, defunded, shut down or vilified by the federal government.”  Voices includes in its criticisms “the repeated muzzling of watchdog agencies.”  http://www.nationalnewswatch.com/2015/06/16/civil-society-coalition-takes-aim-at-harper-government-for-stifling-dissent/#.VYAz6UZQR0p    Full original report from Voices/voix     Dismantling Democracy: Stifling debate and dissent in Canada   http://voices-voix.ca/sites/voices-voix.ca/files/dismantlingdemocracy_voicesvoix.pdf (A 66 page downloadable pdf documenting the claim.)

 Globe and Mail – Sean Fine
Longer waits for parole disadvantage aboriginal offenders: report

The report reveals a concerning tendency to hold Aboriginal offenders until warrant expiry and to release them only when the community supervisory time is already short.  For Aboriginals almost 85% are held beyond the usual practice of two thirds sentence whereas for non-Aboriginals the rate is just below 70%.  Aboriginals enter prison at a younger age and also have a higher rate of suspension of parole. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/longer-waits-for-parole-disadvantage-aboriginal-offenders-report/article24954998/

Toronto Star – Nicholas Keung
Ottawa cancels security policy on headgear – Measure requiring secondary inspection had been called discriminatory by Sikhs

Security at the airport has been revised as regards the protocol for security clearance of people with religious headwear, particularly Sikhs whose turbans used to require secondary screening.  Without much fanfare and partially at least in response to Sikh protest, Transport Canada under Lisa Raitt has let the requirement slip for travel inside Canada as of April 15.   http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2015/06/16/sikhs-protest-new-airport-security-measures-for-turbans-and-other-religious-headgear.html

Prison Photography – Steve Davis

An interview about photographing and teaching workshops in juvenile correctional centers in Washington State.  https://twitter.com/brookpete/status/610868607237623808?t=1&cn=cmVjb3NfbmV0d29ya19kaWdlc3RfdHJpZ2dlcmVk&sig=5c476d78631441fc6341deb516a797cef33f9c72&al=1&refsrc=email&iid=a34b0836aed644d1a3c1b5e5e444b2e9&autoactions=1434490118&uid=874756261&nid=244+591