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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/2720

Title: Homeworking: home office or home sweatshop?
Authors: Ng, Roxana
Yuk-lin Wong, Renita
Choi, Angela
Keywords: changes in household work
Issue Date: 1999
Publisher: Centre for the Study of Education and Work, OISE/UT
Series/Report no.: NALL Working Paper;6
Abstract: By examining the working conditions of women who sew garments at home (heretofore homeworkers) in the Greater Toronto Area, this study challenges the view painted by the media and encouraged by governments and employers that homeworking is a positive and viable alternative for everyone who does home work. Although homeworking seems to provide both the homeworker and the employer/client more flexibility, and certainly reduces overhead costs for the employer, specific conditions of homeworking vary across occupational sectors and from individual to individual. They are shaped by factors such as the occupational strata, education, class, gender, and above all family responsibilities of the homeworker. Using in-depth and telephone interviews with thirty (30) homeworkers who are immigrant women from Asia (Hong Kong, China, and Vietnam), this study adds to present knowledge on the conditions of homeworkers in Toronto and raises questions about the popular image of homeworking as the desired alternative to full-time, stable and office- or factory-based employment. Although the study had a relatively unique and small sample due to the difficulty of identifying homeworkers, its findings are fairly consistent with previous studies conducted by the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU) in 1991 and 1993. The report is therefore a starting point for further investigation into the organization of the changing garment industry, and the impact of these changes on workers in Canada and abroad
URI: http://www.oise.utoronto.ca/depts/sese/csew/nall/res/06homeworkers.pdf
Appears in Collections:Centre for the Study of Education and Work (CSEW)

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