ERIC Number: ED458428
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Breaking the Myth of Flexible Work: Contingent Work in Toronto. A Study Conducted by the Contingent Workers Project.
de Wolff, Alice
A survey of 205 people, 4 group interviews with approximately 30 people, and 6 design and analysis meetings involving approximately 40 people were conducted in a 1999 participatory study of contingent workers in Toronto. (Contingent work was defined to be lower-waged forms of non-permanent work arrangements that include contracting, employment through a temporary agency, sequential short term employment multiple job holding, non-permanent part-time work, and self-employment where the worker does not hire anyone else.) The study found that, despite popular perception of the attractiveness of such "flexible" work arrangements, most contingent workers wanted to break into or rejoin the permanent, core workforce but were prevented from doing so by rules of temporary employment agencies, lack of education, immigration status, or discrimination. These workers received very low wages, had breaks in employment between assignments, worked long days on short notice, and usually lacked benefits such as sick leave, disability, and unemployment insurance. The study determined that the so-called work flexibility is not favored by most contingent workers and is usually a hidden form of unemployment or underemployment. The researchers concluded that increasing the incidence of contingent work may have detrimental long-term consequences for the workers as well as for society as a whole. (KC)
Descriptors: Adults, Employee Attitudes, Employer Attitudes, Employer Employee Relationship, Employment Patterns, Employment Practices, Employment Services, Equal Opportunities (Jobs), Flexible Working Hours, Fringe Benefits, Immigrants, Job Satisfaction, Job Security, Organizational Development, Part Time Employment, Public Policy, Quality of Working Life, Salary Wage Differentials, Tables (Data), Temporary Employment, Underemployment, Unemployment, Wages, Work Attitudes, Work Environment
Toronto Organizing for Fair Employment, 1011 Dofferin Street, Suite 206, Toronto, ONT M6H 4B5, Canada.
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada (Toronto)