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QO Feedback: LGBTQ Worker Vulnerabilities

March 25th, 2013

Queer Ontario has the opportunity to attend and send a written submission to a Ministry of Labour consultation on Integrated Health and Safety in Ontario as a partner with the Ontario Common Front (OCF). This is an important project for us because one of the Ministry’s priorities is to focus on vulnerable workers and individuals performing precarious work. Yet, to date, LGBTQ people have not been identified as a group susceptible to vulnerable and/or precarious work. Therefore, we would like to get your feedback with respect to what we should include in our written submission.
Share your stories, insights, suggestions, and recommendations with us, which we will  incorporate into our feedback on the Ministry of Labour’s “Integrated Health and Safety Strategy.” We will need your feedback by Monday, April 8, 2013 at 6:00 PM, to allow us time to prepare QO’s report.  You can submit your feedback to info@queerontario.org
We look forward to your input!
The Queer Ontario Steering Committee


Note: A few examples listed by OCF as vulnerable workers and/or individuals performing precarious work are:

  • young workers;
  • immigrants;
  • Aboriginal peoples;
  • older workers;
  • those new to their jobs or working for new businesses;
  • temporary foreign and seasonal workers;
  • workers holding multiple part-time, low-paying jobs;
  • workers involved in temporary employment;
  • women;
  • older/senior workers; or
  • injured or disabled workers.

The factors the OCF lists as contributing to worker vulnerability are:

  • individuals not knowing their rights under the Occupational Health and Safety Act;
  • a lack of job or hazard-specific experience or training;
  • the fear of reprisal, including job-loss, for exercising their rights or raising occupational health and safety concerns;
  • the threat of deportation;
  • English not being first language;
  • workers being forced to work in the underground economy  i.e. no records being  “paid cash”;
  • workers being asked to do work they cannot physically or psychologically do because of a disability or injury; and
  • ‘sweat shop’ model or mentality.

Feel free to list any additional groups or factors in your feedback.

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