Category Archives: Health and Safety

Blogs on topics relating to Occupational Health and Safety laws, policies, and best practices

Bill 66 Changes Rules for Overtime Averaging

Bill 66 passed third reading on April 2 and contains changes to the Employment Standards Act provisions for agreements between workers and employers regarding hours of work and overtime. The requirement for Director approval on agreements to work over 48 hours per week has been removed and the averaging agreements for overtime purposes will now be capped at four weeks and will also no longer require Director approval. Further research is required on the full impact of these changes, so stay tuned!

Employees Have the Right to Appeal Discipline

Employees have the right to appeal disciplinary actions taken against them by the employer. So how does that work? The appeal process is covered under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Your Workplace Harassment policy requires employers to “include measures and procedures for workers to report incidents of workplace harassment to a person other than the employer or supervisor, if the employer or supervisor is the alleged harasser”. This “other person” could be a registered HR professional (must have at least a CHRP designation under the HRPA), or the Ministry of Labour (the MOL requires you to put them 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 »