Many years ago, when I was a mere Masters’ of Industrial Relations student at U of Toronto, I had a summer job working for John O’Grady (shout out to John!), a labour researcher and economist. John hired me to search collective agreements, coding specific collective agreement language into a spreadsheet. I grabbed my coffee and headed down each morning to the Ministry of Labour’s Collective Agreement Library on University Avenue, where I manually leafed through dozens of paper collective agreements.
Those days are long gone. The Collective Agreement Library still exists. Collective agreements are still required to be provided to the Ministry of Labour, and the Ministry still makes them available to the public.
However, recently the Library published an on-line, searchable collective agreement database!
There are a variety of ways to search. Looks like hours of fun. The most current agreement is not always there in my experience (because there’s a delay in getting them to the library often), but still this is a very useful database for anyone interested in collective agreement language and trends.