Starting a Worker Co-op: A Canadian Handbook

So you want to start a worker co-op? This handbook outlines the basic information and the processes required to start a worker co-op.


II. What are the Co-op Principles and Values and where do they come from?

In the previous section, we noted that worker co-ops are enterprises that operate by following the Co-operative Principles and Values. Without providing a long history of co-operatives, this section will provide an answer to the question in the above heading, as well as providing some brief comments on the practical issues of applying the co-op principles and values to a worker co-op.

The most recent version of the Co-operative Principles and Values were developed by the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA). The ICA is an umbrella organization that brings together co-operatives from all over the world to collaborate with one another and to support the development of the co-operative form of enterprise. Although co-ops have evolved independently in many different countries with differing historical, social, cultural and economic conditions the co-operatives – through an extended consultation carried out by the ICA – came to a mutual understanding of what constitutes the key aspects of a co-operative.

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Starting a Worker Coop