News briefs

West needs more post-secondary spending: report • Common trends in workplace killings • Winnipeg boosts Aboriginal hiring • Gildan back in fair standing • Quebec bans smoking • Top employers list • Ont. minimum wage increases • P.E.I. unhappy with student test results

West needs more post-secondary spending: report

— Government and employers should ante up cash to expand post-secondary systems in the western provinces, think-tank the Canada West Foundation says. A new report notes students have been turned away for training in occupations where there are labour shortages. Industry is going to have to spend to help rectify the problem, the study says.

Common trends in workplace killings

Raleigh, N.C.
– One-third of workplace domestic violence assaults occur in parking lots before or after work, a study of 155 cases in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, conducted by the non-profit group Peace at Work, shows. In one-quarter of cases restraining orders had been granted. Only eight per cent of employers reported taking any precautions even though in 23 per cent of cases the employer had been forewarned. For more on steps employers should take to protect staff visit, select “Advanced search” and enter article #3582.

Winnipeg boosts Aboriginal hiring

— The City of Winnipeg signed an agreement with two Aboriginal groups that commits the municipality to hiring 200 more native Canadians. While no quotas are in place, when two candidates are equally qualified and one is Aboriginal, that person will get the job. One in five Aboriginals in Winnipeg is unemployed.

Gildan back in fair standing

— Quebec clothing manufacturer Gildan Activewear has been reinstated in the Fair Labour Association. Gildan will open a new plant in Honduras and give preferential hiring treatment to workers laid off when it closed another plant in the country amid accusations of union-busting.

Quebec bans smoking

Quebec City
— Quebec is joining the growing list of provinces banning smoking in restaurants, bars and other workplaces. Health Minister Philippe Couillard said he plans to introduce legislation this spring.

Top employers list

— BC Biomedical Laboratories of Surrey tops the 50 Best Employers in Canada list for the third year in a row. The survey is co-sponsored by the Globe and Mail’s Report on Business magazine and consultants Hewitt Associates. For a look at the 50 Best, click on the related articles link below.

Ont. minimum wage increases

— Ontario’s minimum wage increases to $7.45 an hour from $7.15 on Feb. 1. The wage is scheduled to reach $8 in 2007.

P.E.I. unhappy with student test results

— Prince Edward Island Premier Pat Binns has formed a task force to examine why Islanders finished last in Canada in a test of 15-year-old students’ reading, math, science and problem-solving skills. While Canada ranked in the top 10 in these subjects among 41 nations examined by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, P.E.I. students finished last among their provincial counterparts.

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