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185,000 Ontario jobs at risk from Fair Workplaces Better Jobs Act

Staff Writer |
The Keep Ontario Working Coalition (KOW) released the first and only independent economic impact analysis of Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces Better Jobs Act.

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Conducted by the Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis (CANCEA), the study revealed that if the legislation is implemented as currently drafted, there will be significant, sudden and sizable uncertainty for Ontario jobs, economy and communities.

The study concludes that these vast, unprecedented reforms will put about 185,000 jobs at risk in the first two years, greatly impacting Ontario's most vulnerable workers.

CANCEA was commissioned by the KOW coalition to measure the potential impacts of six key areas of change in Bill 148, including changes to minimum wages, "equal pay" provisions, vacation, scheduling, personal emergency leave (PEL) and unionization.

Data from the economic impact analysis shows:

- $23 billion hit to business over the next two years alone

- 185,000 Ontario jobs will be at immediate risk over the next two years

- 30,000 of the jobs at risk are youth under 25

- 96,000 employees at risk are expected to be women

- 50 per cent increase to inflation for this year and the foreseeable future. The cost of everyday consumer goods and services will go up by $1,300 per household on average each and every year

The Ontario government would need to borrow $440 million more to cover the increases in new costs from this legislation. If the government were to provide offsets to businesses, as they have indicated, the province's treasury will take a bigger hit.

Municipalities will be forced to increase employee wages by $500 million without additional offsetting revenues.

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