Labour expert disputes Wal-Mart gag claim

In the wake of an unsuccessful union drive at a Wal-Mart store in Thompson, Manitoba, Eric Tucker, a professor at York’s Osgoode Hall Law School, commented in the Winnipeg Free Press Aug. 26 about the claim by the world’s biggest retailer that Manitoba is more likely to gag employers during union drives than other provinces. “Employers in Winnipeg may be unhappy with what the Manitoba board has interpreted the restrictions to be on employer activity during union drives,” said Tucker. “But other boards in other provinces also carefully scrutinize employer behaviour and are sensitive to the potential for actions of employers to have a significant impact on workers because of the imbalance of power.”

The year of the wireless campus

Bob Gagne, executive director of York’s Computing & Network Services, told the Toronto Star in a story Aug. 25 that this fall might be a breakout year for wireless usage across campus. “There’s real utility in it, it’s easy to use, the cards are cheap, and in a lot of cases the capability is built into the laptops,” he said. Students are sorting through a back-to-school lineup of electronic gadgetry that includes mobile phones, electronic organizers, wireless-enabled laptops, computer entertainment systems and much else that gets you connected.

On air

  • Margaret Beare, sociology professor in York’s Faculty of Arts and director of the Nathanson Centre for the Study of Organized Crime & Corruption at York’s Osgoode Hall Law School, was interviewed about organized crime on the “Stirling Faux Show” (CHED-AM) Edmonton Aug. 23.