Weekly wrap: Tories back off right to work, AOL CEO outrageous as usual

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Tories back off "right to work" policy
Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak told the Toronto Board of Trade that he would not be running the so-called right-to-work policy in the next election. Hudak's proposal of making union membership and payment of dues optional province in the next provincial election had been controversial, with reports of disagreement within the Conservative ranks. A leaked memo from Conservative MPs showed many feared the policy would cost the party the next election.

The change may be related to the party's loss in the Niagara Falls byelection last week. Union activists flooded Niagara Falls last week to campaign for the New Democrats, who won the riding.

Silicon Valley just doesn’t stop hiring
A survey of hundreds of hiring managers in Silicon Valley shows 41% of firms in the region intend to increase hiring in the coming quarter, while less than 5% intend to decrease hiring. About 80% of the 13,600 jobs added to California in the past quarter were in the San Francisco Bay Area, which is seeing the highest job growth in the state. And with all that hiring, no doubt there’s plenty of room for new HR positions.

AOL CEO Tim Armstrong still not winning any favors
At AOL’s invitation-only Makers Conference last week, CEO Tim Armstrong refused to take questions from the audience. The conference, which claimed to “reset the agenda for women in the workplace”, raised eyebrows for its timing soon after Armstrong’s controversial comments about “distressed babies”.

Minimum wage set for retailer
In the US, retailer Gap Inc. announced it would set a US$9 minimum hourly rate for its US workforce, which would then be upped to US$10 next year. This comes about as the US federal government debates an increase to a minimum wage of US$10.10 an hour by 2016, The NY Post reported.

“To us, this is not a political issue. Our decision to invest in front-line employees will directly support our business, and is one that we expect to deliver a return many times over,” Glenn K. Murphy, chief executive of Gap, said.
 

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