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Abstract

This paper explores whether people are better off working in the precarious employment associated with a neoliberal globalized economy. Firstly, we show the impacts of globalization on the composition of food bank users in Toronto, Canada. We then compare two groups offood bank users, one with at least one household member working, the other without. Our findings demonstrate that the life experiences of the two groups remain depressingly similar: those employed remained mired in poverty and continued to lead marginalized, precarious lives. The lack of investment in education or training characteristic of 'work-first' welfare reforms leads to unstable, low-paid work for the vast majority of those leaving welfare.

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