Canada versus the world

Report compares employment standards
By Sarah Dobson
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 10/16/2008

Tales of top employers providing generous family-friendly benefits are common among Canadian employers, with perks such as top ups for maternity leave, on-site fitness centres and back-up child care. Developed to attract and retain valuable employees, these programs often go above and beyond minimum employment standards.

But while Canada is considered a generous, up-to-date nation when it comes to workers’ rights and privileges, there are a few areas where it doesn’t measure up on the world stage, at least when it comes to legislation. That’s according to a paper by the Institute for Health and Social Policy at McGill University in Montreal that takes a look at policies directed at working families in the low- and middle-income bracket.

“People always look at Canada as one of the top finishers in many areas that concern well-being, but we noticed about four major areas where Canada is really lagging behind,” said Martine Choussard, co-author and researcher at the institute. “(This report) clearly highlights where policy makers should focus their attention.”