The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) is warning that the labor scheme known as Driver Inc. will become the dominant business model in trucking if regulators fail to act on the issue this year.
“The industry is approaching the point of no return as upwards of 25% of the industry is estimated to be involved in some form of the Driver Inc. scheme already,” CTA president Stephen Laskowski said in a press release.
“Without committed action by the end of the year, this model will likely become solidified as the dominant employment practice as the [federal] government moves ahead with the implementation of Bill C3 – Paid Medical Leave and other planned Labour Code reforms – which Driver Inc. companies claim do not apply to them.”
Under the Driver Inc. model, fleet sidestep employer obligations by misclassifying employees as independent contractors.
By CTA estimates, Driver Inc. structures sacrifice more than $1 billion a year in lost tax revenue through the underground economy. And it says the federal government has fallen short on its commitments to end the scheme.
The alliance says it is in the midst of its largest push to draw attention to the issue and has added a tool in the form of a dedicated website – www.stopdriverinc.ca and www.stopponschauffeurinc.ca – to help highlight the problem.
It’s calling on Employment and Social Development Canada to move to a “robust and proactive” national enforcement approach that sees all regional offices identifying and auditing suspected Driver Inc. companies. And it wants the Department of Finance and Canada Revenue Agency to acknowledge the impact of Driver Inc. on the industry and government revenues, and coordinate an approach with ESDC to eliminate the abuse.
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