Precarious Employment: A Growing Trend In Canada

2097 words - 8 pages

Precarious employment is work that is not secure, generally does not include any type of benefits, and is paid so lowly that it generally does not meet the living wage. This type of employment is unfortunately a growing trend in today’s societies due to many factors such as outsourcing, globalization, a saturated job market, shifts from manufacturing to the service sector and jobs also being replaced by computerized units. When speaking on precariousness these trends also affect European societies due to the fact that the outsourcing is generally to places where labour is extremely cheap in order to lower the costs of goods such as Asia and South America. This growing trend is also resulting in negative effects on the economy such as the bottoming out of the middle class and a large amount of citizens living below the poverty line and not able to earn a livable wage. Minimum Wage is on the incline, however, it is still not enough to live on practically and there are many other factors that make precarious work disadvantageous other than the wages such as job security and room for growth and promotion within the company. The negative changes to the job market brought on by the changes to it have resulted in higher expectations and demands from the employers which reduce the amount of people which are eligible for what are now known as “good jobs”. These good jobs generally entail a livable wage, benefits, more flexibility and better job security. Precarious work is categorized and gendered as women and immigrants make up the vast majority of employees in this type of work. Since precarious work affects citizens on a global scale, in this essay, there will be comparisons and contrasts drawn between precarious work in Canada and Europe. Work in European countries is showing similar trends of precariousness through employment opportunities. The similarity in European society is quite prevalent seeing as the rise in precarious work is also brought on by globalization and changes in the market resulting in the decline and weakening within the middle class. The rise of subcontracting, part-time, contract work is also taking place in European societies. Though some small areas of Europe are able to escape this capitalism induced trend, small areas are able to show difference such as Mondragon as taught in lecture, the trend on a continental scale is still downward.
The Canadian job market has gone through many drastic changes as of the last 30 years. There is a steep incline in the amount of people whose work is non-permanent and non-full-time. These types of jobs lack security and people are forced to look for more than one place of employment, however, the laws in regards to “benefits for employees and labour laws are still based on a standard employment relationship developed after World War II” (Gellatly, 2007). Companies and employers have deemed these standards as key in running their businesses to their standards and in a way...

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