Table of contents


Part 1: Context

1 Confronting the "Monster": The COVID-19 Pandemic / John Peters

2 Globalization and the Rise of Bad Jobs / Stephanie Luce

3 Low-wage Work: Canada in Comparative Perspective / Bryan Evans and Carlo Fanelli

4 Globalization, Work, and Employment Regulation / John Peters

Part 2: The Politics of Labour Policy in Canada

5 Provincial Governments and the Politics of Deregulation / John Peters

6 Precarious Employment in Canada’s Federally Regulated Private Sector / Leah Vosko, Andie Noack, Adam King, and Rebecca Hii

7 Why It’s Hard to Organize a Union and Negotiate a Decent Contract / Rafael Gomez and Jennifer Harmer

8 The Politics of Health and Safety at Work / Andy King

9 Disposable People: The Politics of Temporary Migrant Workers in Canada / Philip Kelly, Janet McLaughlin, and Don Wells

10 Poverty, Jobs, and Social Policy / Jim Silver

Part 3: Cases

11 The Service Economy, Low-Wage Work, and the Populist Moment / Mark Thomas and Steve Tufts

12 The Decline of Good Manufacturing Industry Jobs / John Holmes

13 Neoliberalism, Austerity, and Crises in Care Work / Donna Baines

14 Reform or Erosion? The Challenges Facing Canada’s Health Care Workforce / Colleen Fuller

15 Permanent Precarity? Racial Exclusion, Discrimination, and Low-wage Work among Canada’s First Nations / Yale Belanger

Part 4: Better Futures

16 Canadian Labour and Climate Change / John Calvert

17 Organizing for Better Work / Don Wells

18 In Search of a New Politics of Labour: Democratic Futures / Stephanie Ross and Larry Savage



Canadian Labour Policy and Politics is essential reading for undergraduates studying Canada’s labour market. This comprehensive textbook traces the causes and rise of labour inequities and outlines solutions for a more sustainable future.

Written in clear and accessible language by leading experts and practitioners, this book demonstrates how and why laws and public policy – intended to protect workers – often leave employees vulnerable and with little economic or social security. Based on up-to-date data and framed in the context of international developments, this essential text provide readers with real-world examples and case studies of how globalization, labour laws, employment standards, COVID-19, and other issues affect workers on and off the job.

Canadian Labour Policy and Politics invites students into defining a policy agenda for developing greater economic equality and political inclusiveness while fostering a green recovery. Key features include chapter summaries and outlines, suggestions for further reading, and glossaries of key terms.


"It is a wonderful collective achievement of the Canadian labour studies community to make its knowledge accessible to students in one place."

- Peter Graefe