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Canadian Social Research Newsletter
March 20, 2005

Welcome to the weekly Canadian Social Research Newsletter, a listing of the new links added to the Canadian Social Research Links website in the past week.

The e-mail version of this week's issue of the newsletter is going out to 1374 subscribers.
Scroll to the bottom of this newsletter to see some notes and a disclaimer.



Canadian Content

1. Study: Recent changes in the labour market, 1991 to 2004 (Statistics Canada) - March 18
2. Protecting Canada's Vulnerable Workers (two new reports from Canadian Policy Research Networks) - March 18
3. National Balance Sheet Accounts, Economic Accounts Quarterly Review - 4th Quarter, 2004 (Statistics Canada)- March 17
4. PovNet website updated - March 2005
5. National/International Events List 2005
6. Saskatchewan social assistance (welfare) dependency drops to 14-year low (Department of Community Resources) - February 25
7. What's New from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) - University of Toronto
- March 18

International Content

8. Poverty Dispatch Weekly Digest : U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs --- March 17, 2005
9. Double standards on human rights 'undermining UN'? (Financial Times - U.S.) - March 14

Have a great week!

Gilles Séguin

Canadian Social Research Links


1. Recent changes in the labour market, 1991 to 2004 - March 18
(Statistics Canada)

What's New from The Daily [Statistics Canada]:

March 18, 2005
Study: Recent changes in the labour market, 1991 to 2004
Labour demand since 2000 has been in many ways the reverse of the 1990s, shifting from high-tech to housing and resources, according to a new assessment of changes in Canada's labour market.

Recent changes in the labour market (complete article - PDF file, 89K, 10 pages)
NOTE: This article is also available in the March 2005 issue of Canadian Economic Observer ($19)

- Go to the Federal Government Department Links (Fisheries and Oceans to Veterans Affairs) page:

2. Protecting Canada's Vulnerable Workers - March 18
(Canadian Policy Research Networks)

Protecting Canada's Vulnerable Workers (PDF file - 105K, 3 pages)
News Release
March 18, 2005
"A growing proportion of Canadian workers are finding themselves without the basic protections other workers take for granted. They are vulnerable workers – vulnerable, in that they experience a combination of low pay, lack of benefits, insecure working conditions, and lack of opportunity to improve their situation."

This news release introduces the two following research reports in CPRN’s Vulnerable Workers Research Series:

Non-standard Work and Economic Vulnerability
by Richard Chaykowski
March 2005
"Non-standard Work and Economic Vulnerability, by Richard Chaykowski of Queen's University's School of Policy Studies, examines the extent and depth of low pay, the kinds of employment relationships experienced by vulnerable workers, and the extent to which workers are covered by employment benefits."
Complete report (PDF file - 1.8MB, 80 pages)
Summary (PDF file - 75K, 4 pages)


Towards Enhancing the Employment Conditions of Vulnerable Workers: A Public Policy Perspective
by Guylaine Vallée
March 2005
Towards Enhancing the Employment Conditions of Vulnerable Workers: A Public Policy Perspective, by Guylaine Vallée of the Université de Montréal's School of Industrial Relations, explores some key vehicles for extending vulnerable workers' access to minimum employment standards and traditional benefits."
Complete report (PDF file - 1.7MB, 70 pages)
Summary (PDF file - 67K, 4 pages)

Work Network
[Theme: Vulnerability in Labour Markets]
Canadian Policy Research Networks


Related Link:

Sometimes a job is not enough
Mar. 18, 2005
By Carol Goar
"Every time I write about poverty, I get a volley of messages pointing out that the best social program is a job. (...) A strong work ethic does help pull families out of poverty, as my disgruntled correspondents contend. But in today's cut-rate job market, it's not enough"
The Toronto Star

- Go to the Social Research Organizations (I) in Canada page:

3. National Balance Sheet Accounts, Economic Accounts Quarterly Review (4th Quarter, 2004) - March 17
(Statistics Canada)

What's New from The Daily [Statistics Canada]:

March 17, 2005
National balance sheet accounts - Fourth quarter, 2004
"National net worth reached $4.3 trillion by the end of the fourth quarter, or $132,500 per capita. (...)The national balance sheet accounts are statements of the balance sheets of all of the various sectors of the economy. (...) National net worth grew 6.3% in 2004. National wealth, the sum of non-financial assets, grew by 5.7%. This, combined with a decrease in net foreign debt, resulted in an improvement from the 5.3% growth of 2003 in national net worth.

[ So where can I get a reverse mortgage on my $132,500?? ]

Related Link:

Canadian Economic Accounts Quarterly Review - Fourth quarter 2004 (PDF file - 282K, 55 pages)

- Go to the Federal Government Department Links (Fisheries and Oceans to Veterans Affairs) page:

4. PovNet website updated - March 2005

PovNet Site March 2005 Update!

New front-page PovNet content:

* more details about the BC complaint to the Ombudsman re: system problems with the Ministry of Human Resources
* link to Louise Arbour's speech about human rights and poverty issues in Canada (English and French)
* responses to the 2005 federal budgets
* link to Canadian Bar Assoc. court challenge to constitutional right to legal aid
* SPARC BC's report on delivering poverty law services in BC
* updates from New Brunswick, Alberta
* Ontario's Hands Off our Baby Bonus campaign details
* links to information and web sites focussing on poverty issues in the upcoming BC election in May
* supports and services for persons with disabilities in Canada
* Women Elders in Action position paper on situation of women elders in Canada dependent on public pensions
And our resource section highlights the MultilingoLegal web site which provides online access to legal information and community resources in a number of languages.
Go to the PovNet Home Page

- Go to the Non-Governmental Sites in British Columbia (C-W) page:

5. National/International Events List 2005

National/International Events List 2005

- Federal Government Events - Includes events organized and/or sponsored by the Government of Canada throughout the year, from International Customs Day (January 26) to the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women (December 6 ) - includes website URLs

- Non-governmental Organization Events - from Alzheimer Awareness Month (January) to International Children's Day of Broadcasting (second Sunday of December)

- Calendar of Health-Related Days - 2005 - over 100 health-related special days in 2005 - from Health Canada

- Annual International Days/Weeks/Years/Decades - from the United Nations Association in Canada

- United Nations Conferences and Events - from the United Nations

- Go to the Conferences and Events Links page:

6. Saskatchewan social assistance (welfare) dependency drops to 14-yr low - February 25, 2005
Department of Community Resources)

Social Assistance Caseload Reaches 14-Year Low - Saskatchewan
News Release
"The social assistance caseload has dropped to its lowest level in 14 years. The caseload number in January 2005 was 27,669. This is the lowest amount* for the month of January since 1991, and is down considerably from a peak of 41,000 in 1994."
Department of Community Resources

Related links:

NOTE: I can't find any welfare statistics on the Department's website except for the following snapshots:
Frequently-asked questions - click on "Social Assistance" for July 2003 caseload info
[Note that a case can include more than one recipient. Case=Household]
Annual Report 2003-04 Dept. of Community Resources (PDF file - 1MB, 33 pages - incl. a graph showing average caseload/beneficiary data by year from 1994 to 2004)
Number of People on Welfare, March 1995 to March 2005 (PDF file - 133K, 1 page) --- from the National Council of Welfare (for all provinces and territories - these are the latest official public national welfare dependency stats in Canada)


*A special nit-picking comment concerning Amount/Number :
(definitely of interest only to English language sticklers...)
Note the excerpt from the above news release:
"The caseload number in January 2005 was 27,669. This is the lowest amount for the month..."
===>Amount words relate to quantities of things that are measured in bulk; number words relate to things that can be counted.
You can't have an 'amount' of cases or people any more than you can have a 'number' of snow or money.
Common Errors in English

Slipping further on my tangent...

This news release is quite possibly written by the same type of person who, at the end of a voicemail or e-mail message, invites me to get back in touch with him or her by saying something like:
"If you wish further information please contact myself" or some such thing. 'Myself' is a reflexive pronoun that can only be used if the word I comes before it in the same sentence.
[Now don't get me going --- I know myself too well...]


- Go to the Saskatchewan Links page:

7. What's New from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) - March 18
( University of Toronto)

What's New - from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) - University of Toronto



>> Losing ground: The effects of government cutbacks on women in British Columbia, 2001-2005
by Creese, Gillian & Strong-Boag, Veronica
Report prepared for the BC Federation of Labour argues that gender inequality is increasing in BC.
Complete report (PDF file - 257K, 35 pages)
News Release - HTML

>> Early childhood development activities and expenditures/ Early learning and child care activities and expenditures 2003-2004
by Social Development Canada, the Public Health Agency of Canada and Northern Affairs Canada
- Government of Canada provides progress reports on early learning and child care for 2004.

>> Measuring child benefits: Measuring child poverty
by Mendelson, Michael
Report from the Caledon Institute addresses two critical questions in social policy: what is child poverty and how much is an adequate child benefit?

>> The state of the world’s children 2005: Childhood under threat
10th annual report from UNICEF finds that more than 1 billion children are denied the healthy and protected upbringing promised by the Convention on the Rights of the Child.


>> Yes, ex-minister, you're hired [AU]
Australian, 17 Mar 05
Larry Anthony, the Australian government minister who presided over the rapid expansion of private child care providers, has joined the board of ABC Learning Centres, the industry's biggest operator.

>> Minister hears about francophone daycare challenges in Yukon [CA-YT]
CBC North, 17 Mar 05
People in charge of the Yukon's only francophone daycare were given the chance to voice their concerns directly to the man in charge of their funding.

>> Bargaining team for early childhood educators works on first contract proposals [CA-PE]
Guardian, 16 Mar 05
The bargaining team for 200 early childhood educators on P.E.I. held working sessions last weekend to develop proposals for a first contract.

>> Two-thirds rely on family for child care [GB]
Guardian, 14 Mar 05
Two-thirds of British parents still rely on family and friends to look after their children, the children's minister, Margaret Hodge, admitted today. While 40% would prefer to put their child in nursery or daycare, many are concerned about the quality of child care staff and services, said the minister.

>> Parents face cultural walls [CA]
Toronto Star, 14 Mar 05
Kenise Murphy Kilbride and Mehrunissa Ali, early childhood education professors at Ryerson University have released Forging New Ties, Planting New Roots, a 32-page guidebook to help immigrant parents understand and gain access to health care, emergency services, child care and child safety, education, as well as some background on traditions and cultural heritage in Canada.

>> Child care chief retires with £10m windfall [GB]
This Is London, 14 Mar 05
The founder of British day nurseries group Nord Anglia, which has just issued a surprise profits warning, has made nearly £10m from recent share sales.

>> New ABC child care centre probed [AU]
The Age, 13 Mar 05
A third Melbourne ABC Learning child care centre in less than 14 months is being investigated by the Department of Human Services regarding the supervision of a child.

>> Rewriting the story on child poverty in Canada: the UNICEF report and recent federal budget [CA]
Globe and Mail, 13 Mar 05
The headline was bleak: No progress on child poverty. Canada ranks 19th out of 26 OECD nations. But behind the bad news headline lies a good news story waiting to be written.

>> Child care costs exclude women from workforce [IE]
Irish Times, 10 Mar 05
Child care costs in Ireland are the highest in Europe and are keeping large numbers of women out of the workforce, according to a major study.

>> Rural child care advocates buoyed [CA-MB]
Farmers' Independent Weekly, 10 Mar 05
Manitoba has said that it's committed to an action plan for expanding child care services, which includes expanding the number of spaces across the province. Advocates say a closer look at rural child care is needed, as are policies that will work for rural child care programs.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
This message was forwarded through the Childcare Resource and Research Unit e-mail news notifier.
For information on the CRRU e-mail notifier, including subscription instructions , see
The Childcare Resource and Research Unit (University of Toronto, Canada)
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

More Important CRRU Links

What's New? - Links to 100+ Canadian, U.S. and international resources from Jan 2000 to the present.
Child Care in the News - 200+ media articles from January 2000 to the present
ISSUE files - links to 20+ theme pages, each filled with contextual information and links to further info
Links to child care sites in Canada and elsewhere
CRRU Publications
- links to ~60 briefing notes, factsheets, occasional papers and other publications

Also from CRRU:

Current developments in Early Childhood Education and Care: Provinces and territories
Regularly updated
"This resource is a collection of useful online readings about current early childhood education and care policy and program delivery issues in each province and territory. Within each jurisdiction, information is organized into three sections: news articles, online documents and useful websites."

- Go to the Early Learning and Child Care Links page:

8. Poverty Dispatch Digest :
U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs --- March 17
, 2005

POVERTY DISPATCH Digest (Institute for Research on Poverty - U. of Wisconsin)
This digest offers dozens of new links each week to full-text articles in the U.S. media (mostly daily newspapers) on poverty, poverty, welfare reform, child welfare, education, health, hunger, Medicare and Medicaid, and much more...
The Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison offers a free e-mail service that consists of an e-mail message sent to subscribers each Monday and Thursday, containing a dozen or so links to articles dealing with the areas mentioned above. The weekly Canadian Social Research Links Poverty Dispatch Digest is a compilation, available online, of the two dispatch e-mails for that week --- with the kind permission of IRP.

Here's a one-day sample of the subjects covered in the Poverty Dispatch Digest:

March 17, 2005

Today's subjects include: Medicaid Cuts - Opinion and Editorial // No Child Left Behind - Opinion // Minimum Wage - Commentary // Child Poverty - Connecticut, Virginia // Welfare Reform - Arkansas // Child Support Enforcement Fees - Missouri // Social Service Computer Problems - Colorado // Social Services Budget - Texas // Medicaid - New York, Mississippi, Missouri, Florida // Health Care Plan - Tennessee // Special Education Program - Ohio // Low-Income Workers - Arkansas // Faith-Based Initiatives Office - Minnesota, North Dakota // Minimum Wage - New Hampshire, Vermont, New Jersey, Arkansas // Subsidized Day Care Cuts - New York City

NOTE: "Poverty Dispatch is compiled and distributed to e-mail subscribers twice a week -- Mondays and Thursdays. We plan to maintain a broad coverage of poverty-related issues as reported all week in U.S. newspapers and other news sources." (Institute for Research on Poverty)

Most of the weekly digests below offer 100 links or more to media articles that are time-sensitive.
The older the link, the more likely it is to either be dead or have moved to an archive - and some archives [but not all] are pay-as-you-go.
[For the current week's digest, click on the POVERTY DISPATCH link above]

The Poverty Dispatch weekly digest is a good tool for monitoring what's happening in the U.S.; it's a guide to best practices and lessons learned in America.

Subscribe to the Poverty Dispatch!
Send an e-mail message to John Wolf < > to receive a plain text message twice a week with one to two dozen links to media articles with a focus on poverty, welfare reform, child welfare, health, Medicaid from across the U.S.
And it's free...

Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP)
[ University of Wisconsin-Madison ]

POVERTY DISPATCH description/archive - weekly issues back to July 2004 , avg. 100+ links per issue before December 2004!
NOTE: this archive is part of the Canadian Social Research Links American Non-Governmental Social Research page.

For the current week's digest, click on the POVERTY DISPATCH link at the top of this section.
Recently-archived POVERTY DISPATCH weekly digests:

- March 10, 2005
- March 3
- February 24
- February 17
- February 10

- Go to the Links to American Government Social Research page:
- Go to the Links to American Non-Governmental Social Research (A-J) page:
- Go to the Links to American Non-Governmental Social Research (M-Z) page:

9. Double standards on human rights 'undermining UN'? - March 14
(Financial Times - U.S.)

Double standards on human rights 'undermining UN'
March 14 2005
The United Nations human rights commission, the UN's principal forum for promoting human rights, opens its annual six-week session today amid unprecedented criticism of its competence and credibility. For years human rights groups have complained of growing politicisation and double standards that have stifled debate and allowed countries responsible for egregious abuses to escape condemnation. (...) Kenneth Roth, head of New York-based Human Rights Watch, reckons that about half the commission's 53 members are there "not to promote human rights but to undermine them".

Financial Times - U.S.

Related links:

Materials for the 61st Session of the U.N. Commission on Human Rights
"Human Rights Watch presents its priorities and concerns to the 61st session of the U.N. Commission on Human Rights."
March 11, 2005
Human Rights Watch


Commission on Human Rights - 61st session (Geneva )
14 March-22 April 2005
"The United Nations Commission on Human Rights is the world’s foremost human rights forum. Established in 1946 to weave the international legal fabric that protects our fundamental rights and freedoms, its brief has expanded over time to allow it to respond to the whole range of human rights problems. The Commission continues to set standards to govern the conduct of States, but it also acts as a forum where countries large and small, non-governmental groups and human rights defenders from around the world can voice their concerns."
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights


Commission on human rights holds sixty-first session at Palais des nations from 14 March to 22 April 2005
10 March 2005
"The principal human rights organ of the United Nations, the Commission on Human Rights, will conduct its annual six-week session for 2005 from 14 March to 22 April."
United Nations Office at Geneva


- Go to the Human Rights Links page:
- Go to the United Nations Links page:

Disclaimer/Privacy Statement

Both Canadian Social Research Links (the site) and this Canadian Social Research Newsletter belong solely to me, Gilles Séguin.

I am solely accountable for the choice of links presented therein and for the occasional editorial comment - it's my time, my home computer, my experience, my biases, my Rogers Internet account and my web hosting service.

I administer the mailing list and distribute the weekly newsletter using software on the web server of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).
Thanks, CUPE!

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Privacy Policy:
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I promise not share any information on this list, nor to send you any junk mail.

Links presented in the Canadian Social Research Newsletter point to different views about social policy and social programs.
There are some that I don't agree with, so don't get on my case, eh...

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Tax Quotes

"In this world nothing is certain but death and taxes." (Benjamin Franklin)

"The trick is to stop thinking of it as 'your' money." (Anon.)

"The hardest thing in the world to understand is income tax!" (Albert Einstein)

"When there is an income tax, the just man will pay more and the unjust less on the same amount of income." (Plato)

"There are two distinct classes of men... those who pay taxes and those who receive and live upon taxes." (Thomas Paine)

"The Government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend upon the support of Paul." (George Bernard Shaw)

"There is no art which one government sooner learns from another than that of draining money from the pockets of the people." (Adam Smith)

"He who has the base necessities of life should pay nothing; taxation on him who has a surplus may, if need be; extend to everything beyond necessities." (Jean Jacques Rousseau)

"Like mothers, taxes are often misunderstood, but seldom forgotten" (Lord Bramwell)

"A taxpayer is someone who works for the federal government but who doesn't have to take a civil service examination." (Ronald Reagan)