Understanding the Prevalance of Precarious Employment in the Four County Area
The purpose of this research report is to measure the prevalence of precarious employment in the Stratford-Bruce Peninsula Economic Region. The goal of this work is to establish a methodology that allows for the monitoring of precarious employment and its labour market implications over time. While evaluating the social and societal consequences of precarious employment is beyond the scope of this research, a quantitative understanding of its pervasiveness within the four county area can provide a foundation for the exploration of those challenges.
Those who are vulnerable to precarious employment include individuals with unpredictable schedules due to inconsistent hours, seasonal work, and contract-based work. Particular industrial sectors include a higher proportion of precariously employed workers. Certain individual characteristics – including gender, being a visible minority, immigrant status and educational attainment – also correlate more highly with precarious work.
This project was conceived in January 2019, prior to COVID-19, and the unfortunate irony is that precariously employed workers have been exceptionally hard hit by this pandemic. The data for this project was ordered in the spring of 2020, and data and observations in this report do not capture the COVID-19 period, as 2020 annual data has only begun to be released as of February 2021, with more to follow throughout the year. As such, the information presented in this report gives a baseline for understanding precarious employment before the impact of COVID-19 was felt in the labour market.