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Unions critical to well-being of all Albertans

New study says strong correlation with better wages, improved workplace safety, and greater equality

A new study released this morning by the Parkland Institute recommends that the Alberta government should step back from its current moves to reduce unionization and restrict collective bargaining, as labour unions play an important role in improving wages, improving workplace safety, and reducing inequality across the province.

Who’s not voting in Alberta and why?

New report shows lack of time and inhibiting structural factors are important elements

A new study released this morning, on the second anniversary of the 2012 Alberta election, reports that Albertans cite a lack of time and inhibiting structural factors as key reasons for their failure to vote, and recommends increased advocacy and education efforts emphasizing voting as a responsibility of citizenship.

Beware the wealthy bearing gifts

Altruism of the wealthy is sometimes done for less saintly reasons

Everyone loves people who give unstintingly to charity. But a little skepticism might be in order before saluting too much the ballyhooed generosity of the rich.

Budget 2014 a missed opportunity to address inequality

A new fact sheet released this morning by the Parkland Institute in response to the 2014 Alberta Budget says that the Alberta government has missed an opportunity to address a significant roadblock to improved health, happiness, prosperity, and overall well-being for the province.

Social Impact Bonds

An investment in the wrong direction

Do you have $5 million burning a hole in your pocket? If so, have we got a deal for you. The Government of Alberta will soon be allowing you to invest that money in the misery and poverty of fellow Albertans, and pay you a 10 to 20 per cent rate of return to do so.

New fact sheet says Alberta could save billions by addressing growing inequality

Fairer taxes and well-funded public services would improve health and reduce costs

A new fact sheet released this morning by the Parkland Institute says that Alberta should introduce progressive taxes and improve public services in the provincial budget in order to improve health outcomes and significantly reduce costs.

The fact sheet, written by Parkland Institute research director Shannon Stunden Bower, is titled Sick of Inequality: The case for action by the Alberta government on the social determinants of health. Stunden Bower highlights that inequality in Alberta is currently the highest in the nation. In 1982, the top 1% of income earners made ten times what the bottom 10% did. By 2011, the spread had grown to 18 times. At the same time, the earnings of the middle class have been severely squeezed.

Who controls knowledge?

Since last spring’s budget, which saw cuts across Alberta’s post-secondary institutions of more than seven per cent (on top of a two-per-cent cut in already promised money), the province’s universities and colleges have been in panic mode. The panic isn’t only about funding.

New report highlights serious problems with elder care in Alberta

Government policies of privatization and offloading have negatively impacted quality of care

A new report by the Parkland Institute raises serious concerns about elder care in Alberta, and calls into question the government’s policies of privatization, offloading, and cutbacks.

Online charter schools pose risk to public system

For adults, falling leaves evoke Norman Rockwell scenes of school drop-offs, homework and planning Halloween costumes. For a growing number of students in North America, that picture is totally different.  Rather than hoisting a backpack and throwing leaves in the school playground, on Monday morning a lone child sits at a computer at home and logs into a standardized off-the-shelf web-based program.

Report says Albertans should be wary of cyber charter schools

Model sees private corporations using public dollars to deliver on-line education

A new report by the Parkland Institute looks into the growth of for-profit cyber charter schools in the United States, and identifies it as a disturbing North American trend that Albertans should be wary of.

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