Category Archives: Doctor’s Notes and Sick Leave

Blogs on topics related to injury and illness in the workplace; employer and employee rights and responsibilities for the process.

Is There an Acceptable Temperature Range for Workplaces?

Summer weather will be here soon, and I am frequently asked about the heat and temperature levels for workplaces. Temperature is a legitimate issue in determining workplace safety. A particular concern is heat stress. While there are no set minimum or maximum temperatures for most workplaces, there are a few with specific requirements, because either extreme heat or cold may be a hazard. In health care facilities or an industrial establishment, (such as a factory, store, workshop or office), the OHSA regulations set a minimum temperature of 18 °C, subject to some exemptions for things like work outdoors or in Continue Reading »

Are Workers Paid for “Snow Days”?

The 2019 Winter Season has seen a record number of “snow days” which resulted in people not being able to go to work. Are workers eligible to be paid for these “snow days”? Under the Employment Standards Act (ESA), if there are “circumstances beyond the employer’s control” including stormy weather, the employer does not have to pay for cancelled shifts even if the worker showed up for work and was sent home. If the worker’s shift is not cancelled and they are required to show up for work, they could use a Personal Emergency Leave day, particularly if their children Continue Reading »

Is Attendance Management Confusing You?

Thank you to my reader who asked questions regarding the confusing world of Attendance Management programs.  These programs are tricky to navigate because of Human Rights concerns so employers need to use caution when using discipline for absences. 1. Mandated Leaves of Absence – If your workers use the Leave provisions from the Employment Standards Act, these absences cannot be subject to disciplinary action.  There is a limited exception with regard to Personal Emergency Leave in that the absent employee must be able to provide “proof that is reasonable in the circumstances” to show entitlement to the leave.  Failure to Continue Reading »

What Does “Protected Leave” Mean?

Under the Employment Standards Act (ESA) and/or the Human Rights Code, employees are entitled to “protected” leaves of absences. Some examples are Personal Emergency Leave days, Maternity/Parental leave and Compassionate Leaves. “Protected” leave simply means that if an employee exercises their right to take one of these leaves, their right to return to their current job and wage are protected under law. This simply means that if an employee is off, the employer can’t make significant detrimental changes to the job or wage that the employee had when they went off work. Are there “unprotected leaves”? Yes! For example, in Continue Reading »