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In the first-ever research of its kind, a new study by a Brock University Labour Studies professor has examined labour issues for Ontarians working with horses.
The result is a very mixed picture of this province's equine industries, with half of stable staff respondents saying they're paid minimum wage—or less.
Wakeup - Call - Severity - Problems - Brock
"This will be a wakeup call about the severity of some problems," says Brock Professor Kendra Coulter, Chancellor's Chair for Research Excellence and Chair of the Labour Studies Department. "My hope is that the report shines a light, inspires new conversations and adds fodder to those that are underway about how to improve job quality in stables."
On Thursday, Oct. 25, Coulter released her report, Work in Ontario Horse Stables, which presents key findings from a survey of 1,000 people including stable owners and operators, and current and former workers.
Coulter - Light - Misunderstood - Workforce
Coulter says it sheds much-needed light on a widely misunderstood workforce.
"The results provide empirical evidence of certain trends horse people knew informally were happening, as well as some new and promising insights," she says.
Coulter - Research - Work - Animals - Labour
Coulter, whose research work on animals, labour and humane jobs has been recognized in Canada and around the world, says those working with horses are often under-valued and under-appreciated.
"Stable workers are asked to do very difficult work under challenging conditions, and they are excluded from some of even the most basic protections outlined in the Employment Standards Act," she says. "It can manifest in frustration about working conditions and high turnover rates for front-line workers, and difficulty recruiting and retaining talented and reliable staff for employers."
Addition - Rates - Pay - Coulter
In addition to the low rates of pay, Coulter...
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