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Falling Behind
The State of Working Canada, 2000

Jackson, Andrew, Robinson, David, Baldwin,Bob, Wiggins, Cindy
Publisher:  Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Ottawa, Canada
Year Published:  2000  
Pages:  202pp   ISBN:  0-88627-208-4
Library of Congress Number:  HC115.J28 2000   Dewey:  338.971'009'049
Resource Type:  Book

An accessible collation of data and analysis, analyzed from a progressive perspective, about the social and economic realities of working people in Canada.

Abstract:  Falling Behind is a joint project of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and the Canadian Labour Congress. It work provides an accessible collation of data and analysis, analyzed from a progressive perspective, about the social and economic realities of working people in Canada.

Most of the data used for analysis is from 1997 and 1998 and is predominantly sourced from published and unpublished Statistics Canada data. The tables and charts are ordered into specific topics, which are preceded by useful chapter descriptions. The authors acknowledge a weakness in the Statistics Canada data which uses variables limited to gender and age; workers of colour, aboriginal workers and workers with disabilities are not separately accounted for.

Despite the government rhetoric of long-term gains for all Canadians following economic re-structuring, living standards of the 1990s are comparable with those of the mid-1970s and the growth of real income for workers is comparable to that of the Great Depression years of the 1930s. The analysis seeks to be descriptive, and a detailed exploration of contributing factors or recommendations for change are beyond the scope of this work. It is intended as a tool to be utilised by labor and social activists, students, academics and the media and in this way, to promote system change.

[Abstract by Diana Canning]

Table of Contents

Introduction and Acknowledgments

Part I: The Declining Economic and Social Well-Being of Canadian Working People
1. Income: The composition of Income
2. The Level of Overall Income
3. Why Did Canada Do So Badly in the 1990s?
4. Earnings from Employment
5. Security of Employment and Income
6. Poverty and Inequality
7. The Tax / Transfer System and Low Incomes
8. Canada in an International Context
9. Conclusion
Tables and Figures

Part II: Unemployment, Underemployment and Precarious Jobs
10. Job Shortage or Skills Shortage?
12. The Unemployment Squeeze
13. Unemployment
14. "Hidden" Unemployment
15. The Pattern of Job Creation in the 1990s
16. Self-Employment
17. Temporary Jobs
18. Part-time Jobs
19. Jobs in Small Business
20. Workers of Colour and Aboriginal Canadians in the Labour Force
21. Workers with Disabilities
22. Conclusion
Tables and Figures

Part III: The Wonderful New World of Work: Wages and the Quality of Jobs in the 1990s
23. What Kinds of Jobs?
24. The Attack on the Public Sector
25. Low-Paid Jobs
26. The Changing Structure of Earnings
27.Access to Benefits
28. Wages vs. Profits
29. Job Quality in the 1990s: The Growth of Long Hours
30. Changing Shift Schedules
31. Balancing Work and Family
32. Stress and Work Satisfaction
33. Conclusion

Part IV: The Union Advantage
34. Collective Bargaining Coverage Today
35. The Union Wage Premium
36. Incidence of Low Pay
37. Wage Inequality / Polarization
38. Non-Wage Benefits
39. Equality Issues and Collective Bargaining
40. Looking to the Future

Part V: The Changing Distribution of Income: Poverty and the Declining Middle Class
41. Does Inequality Matter?
42. Earnings Inequality
43. Family Income and Inequality: Long-Term Trends
44. Trends in the 1990s
45. Family Income and Government Transfer Payments
46. After Tax Income
47. Inequality and Seniors' Incomes in the 1990s
48. Poverty
49. Poverty in Canada
50. Conclusion
Tables and Figures

Part VI: The Shrinking Social Wage
51. Rolling Back the Welfare State
52. Health Care
53. Post-Secondary Education
54. Social Assistance
55. Unemployment Insurance
56. Housing
57. Child Care
58. Pensions and Seniors' Income
59. Social Well-Being
60. Index of Social Health
61. Conclusion
Tables and Figures

Part VII: The Tax System
62. Canadian Taxes in the International Context
63. Personal Income Taxes
64. The Personal Income Tax System and Well-Being
65. Regressive Taxation
66. Who Bears the Burden?
67. Corporate Taxation
68. Conclusion
Tables and Figures

Part VIII: The State of Working Canada in the New Millenium
69. Slow Growth in Wages Continues
70. The Vulnerability of Working Households
71. Will the Expansion Continue?
72. What About Tax Cuts?
73. The Lost Decades


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