Number of decades that the average of provincial minimum wages in Canada has remained unchanged in real terms. (Source)
Heard a lot about Temporary Foreign Workers? Now hear from them!
Building Bridges, Breaking Barriers: Migrant Workers Speaking Tour featured discussion from thee migrant workers -- a live-in caregiver, a farmworker and a restaurant worker.
Labour Day (or fête du travail) is celebrated on the first Monday of September. The day is often marked with parades, protests and reminders of the continued struggles of workers for fair wages, decent hours and safe working conditions.
Canada’s first Labour Day event was way back in 1872. As mechanized labour started to sweep the country with the Industrial Revolution, workers were increasingly easier to replace with machines. The fear of losing their jobs often kept workers in unsafe workplaces, working excessive hours for very little pay. At this time, Canada was still operating under archaic British laws which made unions illegal and had already been abolished in Britain.
On travels this summer, I went to Rochester, NY, which was the home of the Eastman Kodak operation. I visited the Eastman Museum which featured a large exhibit of the photographs of Lewis Hine. While you may not immediately recognize his name, you likely have seen his iconic photographs, especially those dealing with child labour. Life magazine deemed his photograph of the Pennsylvanian breaker boys to be one of the "100 photographs that changed the world." His photographs of young girls working in cotton mills still have the power to move your heart a century later.