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Employment/Labour Standards

Ontario pension reforms – Where are they now?

The pace of pension reforms in Ontario has been fast-moving since the release of the Ontario Budget on March 28, 2018. Among other things, the Budget announced continued work on the new funding rules for defined benefit pension plans and related increases to coverage under the Pension Benefits Guarantee Fund, a consultation on a new funding framework for target benefit multi-employer pension plans, consultations regarding new protections for plan members affected by employer insolvencies, and continued work on the new pension and financial services regulator, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority.

 

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Q&A: Bill 148 increases vacation entitlements for all employees

In partnership with Stringer LLP, First Reference Inc. recently hosted the 19th Annual Employment Law Conference on June 12, 2018, where we discussed the latest legal developments on topics including practical compliance strategies in light of Bill 148. While the law is clear in theory, its application tells many stories as employers and HR professionals deal in the practical world of differing employment dynamics. In this conference Q&A, we address the increases to vacation entitlements brought forth by Bill 148.

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with an Ontario labour arbitration decision in which the arbitrator ruled personal emergency leave entitlement is in addition to any floater days allowed under a collective agreement, a recent HRTO decision which held there is no absolute right to use medical marijuana in the workplace, and a recent survey that found job seekers, while enticed by work from home options, are also aware of the pitfalls.

 

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Off-duty drunk driving not just cause for termination – Even for a firefighter

In Klonteig v West Kelowna (District), the British Columbia Superior Court found that an employer that terminated a firefighter for driving drunk in a fire department vehicle while off duty did not have just cause to terminate his employment.

 

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Celebrating Canadian Multiculturalism Day

Canadian Multiculturalism Day is celebrated on June 27 each year. According to the Government of Canada, Canadian Multiculturalism Day is an opportunity to celebrate the country’s diversity and its commitment to democracy, equality and mutual respect, and to appreciate the contributions of the various multicultural groups and communities to Canadian society.

 

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BC Court of Appeal clarifies employee’s duty to mitigate and necessary deductions for “avoided,” and “avoidable”, loss

A recent BC Court of Appeal decision is a good reminder and summary of the principles underlying an employee’s duty to mitigate following a wrongful dismissal, and confirms that post-termination income in excess of supplementary income that an employee has earned while employed is properly deducted from a wrongful dismissal damages award.

 

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The non-competition clause – Drafting and cautionary notes

A non-competition clause (or non-compete clause) is a passage in an employment contract which purports to prohibit employees from working for another employer or starting their own business which competes with their employer during and after employment.

 

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Celebrating Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day in Quebec

Saint-Jean-Baptiste

In Quebec, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day, Fête nationale du Québec et de la Francophonie canadienne, is a statutory holiday on June 24 each year.

 

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Celebrating Discovery Day in Newfoundland and Labrador

Discovery Day

In Newfoundland and Labrador, Discovery Day is celebrated on the nearest Monday to June 24. This year, Discovery Day falls on Monday, June 25, 2018.

 

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Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with terminating independent contractors, offering a promotion without a pay increase and BC’s new employer health tax.

 

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Celebrating National Aboriginal Day

Thursday June 21, 2018, marks National Aboriginal Day in Canada. This day of recognition and celebration honours the unique heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.

 

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There’s a tidal shift happening in human rights – Are employers ready?

The intolerance brought on by the #MeToo movement is being mirrored in Human Rights Tribunal decisions across the country as awards for damages relating to sexual harassment show an upward trend. There are also other changes brewing in human rights law, particularly in Ontario. A recent decision on age discrimination and benefit coverage may require significant amendments to employer benefit plans and resulting costs to employers.

 

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Not so constructive feedback: Employer’s unilateral changes result in constructive dismissal

In Robinson v. H.J. Heinz Company of Canada LP, Stinson J. found that the Plaintiff, a long term employee of the Defendant, had been constructively dismissed when the Defendant progressively stripped responsibilities from her position after a merger.

 

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Escalating damage awards for employees at the HRTO

It would appear that there is an increasing willingness on the part of the HRTO to grant significant monetary awards to discriminated employees.

 

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Remote workers: Pros, cons and tips

Workflow and infrastructure will need to adjust if employees are working remotely. The more paperless and automated, the easier it is to make the transition to remote work. Video conferencing, phone calls and some sort of in-person meeting on a regular basis are all good practices to make sure that employees working from home still have an opportunity for in-person communication with other employees.

 

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