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Saturday , 22 November 2014

Category Archives: Urban Living

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Features on the downtown scene, events and urban living.

National Housing Day draws attention to plight of the homeless

A national day whose origins are in a “national disaster” must be one on which emotions are mixed. National Housing Day, “celebrated” November 22 in Canada, has its origins in the Toronto Disaster Relief Committee (TDRC), which in 1998 called on all levels of government to declare homelessness a national disaster requiring emergency humanitarian relief. It went on to urge the development of a National Homelessness Relief and Prevention Strategy, declaring that Canada’s governments were violating the human rights of the homeless. The TDRC formulated what it called the “1 per cent solution,” a funding formula whereby each level of government would allocate 1 per cent of its budget to ... Read More »

E-signatures coming to Ontario real estate transactions

Ontario is moving closer to allowing electronic signatures in real estate transactions. The provincial government has already made e-signatures legal in other commercial transactions, and has accepted their validity for real estate in principle. People buying and selling real estate will be able to sign documents and email them back and forth rather than having to present the hard copy in person, as is now the norm. The government says it needs to determine how to implement e-signing without putting the public at risk. The attorney general, Madeleine Meilleur, said at Queen’s Park that the government will continue consulting the public about e-signing until the end of the year as ... Read More »

You’ve got to keep the customer satisfied

“Our goal is to exceed your expectations.” How many times have you seen those pious-sounding words in some company’s advertising or website? They are everywhere. They are what may politely be called a marketing cliché, and what may be less politely represented by two initials, the first of which is “b”. With every business from car dealerships to law firms to nursing homes to manufacturers of semiconductors claiming to want to exceed our expectations, it must follow that consumers everywhere are exceedingly well satisfied. Why, then, do only 2 per cent of Canadian consumers say that the companies they have dealt with exceeded their expectations? What’s more, why do so ... Read More »

Bullying at work an uncomfortable reality for many

Is your boss a bully or just a person with a very forceful management style, a difficult person to get along with? Does a certain co-worker engage in psychological violence against you, or do the two of you merely have personality conflict? Almost half of Canadians think they have been bullied at work, according to a Harris Poll done for, and most say it’s the boss doing the bullying. The bullying has been so bad for some that they have had to quit their jobs. Of those who said they had been victims, a quarter said that the bullying was going on in their current positions. But what do ... Read More »

Shopping when you’re supposed to be working? At least be discreet!

Ever wonder what the guy or gal staring fixedly into the monitor screen at the reception desk, office cubicle or service counter is looking at with such deep interest? In the old days, when all we had on our desks was a typewriter, office workers couldn’t really hide anywhere. If a boss walked by and the typist wasn’t typing, questions would be asked. Nowadays, who knows what workers are really up to? As it happens, CIOs know, and they don’t necessarily like what they know. A lot of the time, we’re not doing what we’re paid to do. An annual survey of CIOs in Canadian and American companies by Robert ... Read More »

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