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My Talk at York (Feb. 6): Traditional Unions Can’t Help Baristas. Can Non-Traditional Unions?

Stephanie Ross, Co-Director of the Global Labour Research Centre here at York was kind enough to ask me to do a talk at the Centre on labour law.  I’ll be doing that talk on Thursday February 6 at  noon in Ross S802.

Here is the event poster.   And here is the Facebook event notice.

The title of my talk is:

coffeeTraditional Unions Can’t Help Baristas.  Can Non-Traditional Unions?  A Legal Discussion

There’s been a lot of chatter recently about baristas and other low wage service workers looking to unions for help. David Doorey will argue that those efforts, while valiant, are doomed to fail. Canadian labour laws aren’t designed to enable collective bargaining in these types of workplaces. Doorey’s talk will consider whether recent Charter cases and the growing influence of American labor law in Canada hint at an alternative route that could make collective representation possible in small service sector workplaces.

This talk will draw on comments I’ve made to media about coffee shop union organizing (see here and here), blog entries discussion the challenges of organizing coffee shop and retail workers, and my paper called Graduated Freedom of Association published in the Queens Law Journal last year.

Come on out if you are around York that day.


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