Les Stages, l’emploi jeunesse, et les élections fédérales 2015 : Une analyse des positions des partis politiques

En prévision des élections fédérales 2015, l’Association canadienne des stagiaires a développé un questionnaire sur les enjeux reliés aux stages non rémunérés, incluant la réforme du Code canadien du travail, et la création d’une politique proactive qui soutiendrait la transition des jeunes de l’école au marché du travail.

Nous avons reçu des réponses de tous les partis politique principaux à l’exception du Parti Conservateur du Canada (PCC). L’analyse de leurs réponses suit et l’entièreté de leurs réponses est disponible ici (en anglais).  L’analyse est divisée entre les partis pancanadiens et les partis présentant les candidats uniquement ou principalement au Québec.

Depuis trois ans, l’Association canadienne des stagiaires travaille directement avec le Parti Libéral du Canada (le PLC), le Nouveau Parti Démocratique (NPD) et le PCC. L’Association est un organisme strictement non partisan. L’analyse qui suit se base uniquement sur les réponses données par les partis. Aucune autre source n’a été consultée. L’analyse a été faite par Andrew Langille, le directeur juridique de l’Association, membre d’aucun parti politique.

L’Association canadienne des stagiaires encourage chacun et chacune à s’impliquer dans la politique durant les élections fédérales. Vous pouvez vous renseigner davantage sur le processus de vote par le biais du site web d’Élections Canada ou en appelant 1-866-463-6868. Si vous avez des questions particulières suite à la lecture de cette analyse, nous vous encourageons fortement à contacter directement le candidat dans votre circonscription afin de mieux comprendre leurs positions et ainsi faire un choix informé le 19 octobre. Les élections auront lieu le 19 octobre, et le vote par anticipation est possible dès la semaine prochaine. Nous encourageons fortement tous et chacun à voter.

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Internships, Youth Unemployment, and the 2015 Federal Election: An Analysis of the Parties’ Positions

The Canadian Intern Association is a not-for-profit organization that advocates for the workplace rights of interns and young workers. In advance of the October 19, 2015 general election, we developed a questionnaire around issues related to unpaid internships, law reform to the federal labour code, and active labour market programs to support youth employment. We received responses from all of the major political parties with the exception of the Conservative Party of Canada. An analysis of the parties’ responses is provided below and the entirety of the actual responses is available for download here. The analysis is divided between the national parties and parties predominately running candidates in Quebec.

As a strictly non-partisan organization, we have engaged directly with the leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada (“the LPC”), the New Democratic Party (“the NDP”), and the Conservative Party of Canada (“the CPC”) over the past three years to promote greater workplace protections for interns.  The analysis here is solely based on the responses we received from the parties. No other sources we consulted. Andrew Langille, the Canadian Intern Association’s General Counsel, who does not hold membership in any political party, prepared the analysis.

The Canadian Intern Association urges everyone to engage in the political process surrounding the Federal election. Information about registering to vote can be obtained from the Elections Canada website or by calling 1-866-463-6868. If you have specific questions arising out of our analysis we encourage you to speak directly with candidates in your riding to understand their positions and make an informed choice. The election in on October 19, 2015, and there will be advance polls taking place in the next week. We strongly encourage everyone to vote.

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Canadian Intern Association Submits Its Recommendations to Ontario’s Changing Workplaces Review

Last week, the Canadian Intern Association submitted its recommendations to the Changing Workplaces Review, the Ontario government’s ongoing review of labour and employment law.

The Canadian Intern Association’s submissions call for the Ontario government to amend the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (the “ESA”) and the Labour Relations Act (the “LRA”) to provide greater protections for interns and students. Highlights include the following recommendations:

  • Repeal section 1(2) of the ESA and require employers to pay all interns who are not performing their internship as a part of a placement approved by a secondary school board, college of applied arts and technology or a university;
  • Repeal the exemption in O. Reg. 285/01 that excludes students in training for certain professions from key protections under the ESA;
  • Repeal the full-scale exclusion from the ESA for students in experiential learning placements approved by a secondary school board, college of applied arts and technology or a university presently contained in section 3(5) of the ESA. Enact new provisions applying the six-part test presently contained in section 1(2) of the ESA to these positions. Hold secondary school boards, colleges of applied arts and technology and universities to a duty to ensure compliance with these provisions;
  • Enact a statutory definition of volunteer and take other measures to curb volunteer misclassification;
  • Allow for anonymous and third party complaints under the ESA;
  • Expand the use of proactive enforcement under the ESA; and
  • Amend the LRA to provide broader protection for collective action undertaken by interns and other non-unionized employees.

“It’s time we protect the vulnerability of students and interns by bridging the gaps that have allowed them to be exploited for far too long,” said Schenella Pinto, the Canadian Intern Association’s Director of Research.

“The submissions from the Canadian Intern Association shine a light on how young workers, students, and interns continue to be exploited by employers in Ontario,” added General Counsel Andrew Langille, “Law reform to modernize the rules around internships and to promote paid work is incredibly important.”

The Canadian Intern Association’s full recommendations are available online below.

Canadian Intern Association Submissions to the Changing Workplaces Review.

Event: Interns, Connect! A Forum on Upsetting Unpaid Work (Toronto)

Making connections on LinkedIn is no substitute for solidarity in a precarious labour economy. In a job market where we skip from project to project, contract to contract, employer to employer, we adjust our collective behaviour to unstable work. Interns, often working without pay and social protections, are among the crowded frontlines of precarious employment. The intern slogan, “getting a foot in the door,” is a wager. Cynical resignation to unpaid work is widespread. And reluctance to speak out is understandable in a hyper-competitive labour market regulated by reputation.

And yet, interns and their allies resist. They challenge employers, pursue lawsuits, take direct action, propose policy, and use social media to expose exploitation. But the state of the intern economy is mixed. The Ontario Ministry of Labour recently launched a new “blitz” to crack down on illegal internships—but this is a short-term effort. The momentous legal victory of interns against the media giant Fox Searchlight was stalled in 2015. Intern activist groups are spreading, but connecting interns who are dispersed is a major challenge.

What’s the state of the intern issue? How do internships connect to the wider precarious labour economy? Are colleges and universities part of the problem or the solution? While internships have grabbed headlines, whose experiences of unpaid work aren’t being talked about enough? How does the informal economy of “connections” reproduce social inequality in the world of work? What strategies for connecting interns and improving internships are effective? How might unions connect with interns?

Join us to explore these questions with interns, activists, lawyers, and researchers. Brief presentations will be followed by a Q & A and discussion.

Moderated by Sara Mojtehedzadeh

Celebrating the publication of Interrogating Internships: Unpaid Work, Creative Industries, and Higher Education, a special issue of tripleC

Presented by Cultural Workers Organize in partnership with the Canadian Intern Association and the CWA Canada Associate Member Program

Thurs. Sept. 24, 2015

The Garage at the Centre for Social Innovation Annex
720 Bathurst St.

Please RSVP at https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/interns-connect-a-forum-on-upsetting-unpaid-work-tickets-18480286033

Free and open to the public
Snacks and refreshments will be served


Carlo Fanelli is Visiting Professor at the Department of Politics at Ryerson University. His research focuses on work and labour market restructuring, urban governance, and public sector austerity. Carlo serves as editor of Alternate Routes: A Journal of Critical Social Research, and his book, Megacity Malaise: Labour and the Struggle for Public Services, will be out in the new year.

Ella Henry has been involved in activism around unpaid internships as Co-Chair of Students Against Unpaid Internship Scams. She has a Bachelor of Arts from St. Thomas University and a law degree from the University of Toronto—although as a student she likely spent more time on student activism and union organizing than being a student. She is currently articling at a union-side labour law firm.

Deena Ladd is one of the founders and a coordinator at the Workers’ Action Centre. WAC organizes to improve wages and working conditions with women, racialized, immigrant, and low-waged workers in precarious jobs that face discrimination, violations of rights, and no benefits in the workplace.

Andrew Langille is a Toronto-based labour lawyer and acts as the General Counsel for the Canadian Intern Association. His graduate work at Osgoode Hall Law School focused on the regulation of work during the school-to-labour market transition and formed the theoretical basis for law reform initiatives to increase workplace rights for interns. He has lectured extensively, both domestically and internationally, on intern rights, the impact of precarious work on young workers, and intergenerational equity. He blogs at youthandwork.ca.

Katherine Lapointe is an organizer with CWA Canada, an all-media labour union. Katherine coordinates associate memberships in the union for student, volunteer, and precarious media workers. Her work focuses on setting up training and networking opportunities, raising awareness of worker rights, and doing advocacy work on issues that impact emerging media workers.

Josh Mandryk is the Executive Director of the Canadian Intern Association. Prior to this, Josh was Co-Chair of Students Against Unpaid Internship Scams, a coalition of students and youth who urged the Ontario government to take action on unpaid internship scams. In these roles, Josh has mobilized students through demonstrations, petitions, and public legal education, written op-eds in the Toronto Star, presented before legislative committees, and worked with elected officials to promote interns’ rights.

Sara Mojtehedzadeh is the Toronto Star’s Work and Wealth reporter.

Jainna Patel took part in a highly exploitative internship program with Bell Mobility in 2012. She left and fought her employer, claiming it was an illegal internship. Despite much hesitation, she decided to go public and hoped to educate and empower others in similar situations to be strong enough to walk away. In 2014, justice was served when the program was shut down.


Wall of Shame: Rogers TV Make Up Artist

One of Canada’s worst illegal internship offenders strikes again: Rogers TV. Someone from Rogers TV, a subsidiary of Rogers Communications (yes THAT Rogers), posted an advertisement on Kijiji looking for a Makeup Artist.

Rogers appears to be looking for a highly professional, reliable makeup artist who is willing to make a 4-6 month commitment and of course, work for free. The ad in it’s entirety can be found here.

Although we understand that Rogers TV, a CRTC mandated community access arm of Rogers Television, offers experience in broadcast and unique community programming, there is no reason why the operating costs of these programs should not include wages for workers.

This internship is illegal (unless part of a school program), exploitative and contributes to unemployment. If you want to get your foot in the door and Rogers isn’t paying, then who is?

Here is the text of the advertisement (Date Listed 17-Aug-15):

Address 3573 Wolfedale Road, Mississauga, ON L5C 1V8

Job Offered By Individual

Company: Rogers TV

Job Type: Part-Time

Volunteer: Makeup Artist Internship Opportunity

Looking For:

Looking for experienced makeup artists to volunteer at Rogers TV at our Mississauga Studio. Duties include applying makeup TV hosts as well as guests. 4-6 month commitment is required and Volunteers also must provide their own makeup kit.

Beginning Date: September 1st 2015

Hours: Tuesdays at 12 PM starting September 1st 2015

  • Highly Professional
  • Honest, reliable, and consistent
  • Exceptional interpersonal & communication skills
  • Must provide own makeup kit

Salary: Unpaid (this is a volunteer position), credit for school can be given if requested

Please e-mail a detailed resume and cover letter to the Coordinator of Volunteer Resources if interested.

Thanks to Reddit user /u/swinglinefan for bringing this to our attention.