Sunday, April 21, 2024
Philip Fletcher, Stephen Laskowsi and Gene Emslie at the HTC dinner event October 18, 2023.

OTA to launch “Drivers Inc” tip line

The Ontario Trucking Association will launch a tip line to fight against the “Driver Inc” business model, OTA president Stephen Laskowski said in his talk to the Hamilton Transportation Club on October 18th.

The Driver Inc. model is based on commercial vehicle drivers who do not own/lease their own vehicle becoming incorporated and receiving payment from their carrier with no source deductions. This practice opens the door not only to the possibility of tax manipulation by those involved, but also in forms of human trafficking among new immigrants who are not aware of payments and protections to which they may be entitled as an employee.

“With regards to forced labor, in my role as president of OTA/CTA, I get a lot of calls. And I have been getting increasingly calls from a group immigration consultants and community advocates about the forced labor associated with bribery, or lending to drive.

“How much does it take to get a truck driver’s license now, between $10,000 and $12,000 maybe? These people are facing $80 to $100,000. And when they complain, see they’re not permanent residents yet, they hear ‘Oh, I guess you don’t like Canada…’”

The Personal Service Business model is out of control, Laskowski said:n“That’s what Driver Inc is, and it’s out of control. We have been told by CRA that there are multiple carriers under investigation… next week, you will receive a tip line sheet from us that will report carriers you believe that are involved in Drivers Inc. The tip line will also include information from Canada Border Services Agency; WSIB; and Labour.”

Other topics Laskowski touched included winter driving in Northern Ontario; government funding for driver training; and the coming clean technologies and net zero emissions.

The Hamilton Transportation Club, which will celebrate its 100th Anniversary in 2025, combines an educational format with social networking. Members benefit from the wide selection of speakers that are representative of all areas of transportation and enjoy a variety of events.