L'auteur, après avoir établi les fondements du droit au travail, en précise la notion. Il montre les tentatives d'insertion dans le droit positif. Une dernière partie est consacrée à répondre à la question : à qui appartient la responsabilité de fournir un emploi ?
The right to work can be considered as something positive and also as something which is negative.
In one of these instances, the right to work lies in the possibility of actually performing a certain work without being prevented illegitimately from doing so. It can then be compared with the right to live, to get married, the general right of property and the right to education. Other people are under the obligation of bringing no obstacle to the exercise of such a right.
In the other case, the right to work is considered as the moral foundation to claiming a job. According to this right of any man, others would be under the obligation of actually providing him with some work. The big question then is to find out who would be under such an obligation.
The first aspect of the right to work is pretty well cared for by Canadian legislation. Many statutes protect the workers against undue discrimination originating from union activity, race, religion or colour. It is, moreover, covered by the regulations of some professional bodies, by seniority and layoff provisions of most collective labour agreements.
As far as the right to claim a job is concerned, western countries are not actually giving it a full practical recognition, even if some of them have embodied a declaration to that effect in their fundamental law. Some totalitarian states have in fact achieved this policy but by stressing the obligation to work and by forgetting about human liberties.
Morally, it is the duty of free enterprises, of governments and of the society as a whole to make it possible for the right to work, considered as a positive claim to a job, to become effective.
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DION, GÉRARD, L.Ph., L.Th., M.Sc. Soc., directeur du Département des relations industrielles et professeur à la Faculté des sciences sociales de l'Université Laval, Québec.