Monday’s Mix

Each Monday we present brief excerpts of recent posts from five of Canada’s award-winning legal blogs chosen at random* from forty-one recent Clawbie winners. In this way we hope to promote their work, with their permission, to as wide an audience as possible.

This week the randomly selected blogs are 1. David Doorey’s Law of Work  2. Youth and Work  3. Ontario Condo Law Blog  4. Slater Vecchio Connected  5. Wise Law Blog

David Doorey’s Law of Work
Why Do Workers Support Policies To Weaken Labour Rights?
My colleague here at the School of HRM at York, Tony Fang, found a while back that the union wage premium in Canada is about 7.7% (see page 13), meaning that unionized workers earn that much more on average than nonunion workers. Unionized workers also receive significantly better benefits and pension plans. Since polls suggest people are very concerned about growing income inequality, it might seem logical that they would also support policies and practices that put more money into the hands of working folks. Thus, if you are a nonunion worker earning less than what a unionized worker earns, a rational response would be to say, “Why am I doing the same work for less pay, less job security, and fewer benefits? I should join a union too.” . . .

Youth and Work
Short Bus: Why is the Wynne Government Attacking Young Teachers?
[Update: here are the details of the Wynne Government’s plans. I note that the plan calls for a 50% reduction in the number of B.Ed students in Ontario. I’m supportive of this aspect of the plan as the Wynne Government is stealing adopting a measure that I previously called for.] I am able to confirm that later this morning the Wynne Government will be announcing a radical shift in how teachers are trained at Ontario’s universities. The announcement will centre around increasing the length of Bachelor of Education programs from one year to two years starting in 2015. Simply put, this is a terribly regressive policy lacking in any sensible public policy rationale. I’ve been following this issue for the better part of three years and the approach of Ontario’s Government simply baffles me. Below I work through some of the underlying structural issues and expose how this announcement will be another massive blunder. . . .

Ontario Condo Law Blog
GMA Condo Alert! (Spring 2013 edition)
The spring edition of our quarterly newsletter was distributed to over 500 attendees of the bi-annual Condo Conference and Tradeshow held April 27 in Hamilton. Hats off to the Golden Horsehoe Chapter of the Canadian Condominium Institute for another great conference, jam-packed with seminars, friendly exhibitors and the latest updates on the Condo Act Review process still underway. The newsletter is now available for download (here) . . .

Slater Vecchio Connected
Hands-Free Devices Unsafe
Now that cellphone bans while driving have spread across the country, carmakers and cell-phone providers are cashing in on hands-free technology.
But a growing body of research says that talking ‘hands-free’ is not solving the problem of distracted driving on our roads. “It’s not that your hands aren’t on the wheel, it’s that your mind is not on the road,” says David Strayer, a leading researcher from the University of Utah’s Applied Cognition Laboratory.
In a recent Canadian study, researchers from the University of Alberta found that talking on a hands-free device increases the quantity and severity of driver error.

Wise Law Blog
140 Law – Legal Headlines for Friday, June 7, 2012
– Defendant said he shot lawyer to death ‘because he made our lives a misery,’ prosecutor tells jury
– US Marijuana arrest figures show ‘staggering racial bias,’ ACLU report says
– Severe rusting of ill-fated Elliot Lake mall didn’t alarm engineer
– Conflicts tune-up: 5 steps to avoiding conflict of interest claims
– Group names McCarthy best Canadian law firm for women . . .

*Randomness here is created by and its list randomizing function.

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