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CACEE Responds to Ontario Government Action on Unpaid Internships

posted on March 28, 2014
Media Release



CACEE Responds to Ontario Government Action on Unpaid Internships

Applauds Ontario Government for enforcing the Labour Standards Act, but asks Minister to offer unemployed Ontarians an alternative

Friday, March 28, 2014 – in light of recent action taken at the magazines The Walrus and Toronto Life, the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE) credits the Hon. Kevin Flynn, Minister of Labour for enforcing the Ontario Labour Standards Act. As the government proceeds to action with employers who have unpaid interns working within their organizations, CACEE asks the Minister to consider that many employers may be in contravention without intent or malice, and that they were operating in an environment of the department’s making.

“CACEE’s position on unpaid internships is simple: don’t break the law. We applaud the government for finally enforcing the LSA. But, as the Minister has instructed his staff to enforce the law, CACEE asks the Minister to consider employers were operating within an environment that his department, through their inaction, helped create.” says Paul D. Smith, CACEE Executive Director.

Moreover, as Department officials launch this initiative to curb the practice of unpaid internships, CACEE asks Minister Flynn to direct unemployed Ontarians toward an alternative.

“Halting the practice of unpaid internships is fine, but what about the young people who were looking to these practices to help them gain relevant industry experience? There are willing interns because they perceived that they stood to gain from the experience. Removing internships does not address the need. Does the Minister have any suggestions?” asks Smith. 

At the end, CACEE is satisfied that the Minister is talking action against the practice of unpaid internships. We look forward to hearing more from Minister Flynn about the important next steps which will help Ontario’s young people to more successfully transition into the workforce. Meanwhile, for those looking for immediate assistance, we suggest:

  • If you are a college / university student / alumni visit your campus career centre. People there will help you
  • If you are looking for a paid internship opportunity, visit https://www.careeredge.ca  - they have many opportunities for you to consider


CACEE is a national non-profit partnership of employer recruiters and career services professionals. Our mission is to provide professional networking and development opportunities, information, advice, and other services to employers and career service professionals.


For more info contact:

Paul D. Smith

pauls@cacee.com  (613) 634-2359