canadian employment law
A new regulation under Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety Act mandates basic safety awareness training for all Ontario workers and supervisors – with a specific focus on small business and vulnerable workers.
Three of the most popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with significant changes to employment and labour law in Ontario, wrongfully dismissing an employee for refusing to sign an updated list of duties, and an employee’s duty to mitigate.
On November 9, 2013, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander announced significant changes to the Canadian Experience Class (“CEC”). Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) will now impose a total annual cap on the number of new CEC applications that it accepts and introduce limits on the number of applications that may be accepted in certain occupations. In addition, CIC will change the timing of when language ability is assessed.
Readers of this blog have read of the difficulty encountered by employers in Ontario in drafting and enforcing non-competition covenants. The obstacles to enforcing such covenants were highlighted in a decision of the Superior Court released on April 5, 2013, the employer was faced with a concerted effort by three of its employees to open a competitive business within its market…
The law of employment, like every area, is always evolving. This often works to the consternation of both employers and employees, who would like to have a sense of certainty regarding their rights and obligations. While it may sound self-serving, the ongoing evolution of the law is another reason why it is important to work with an employment lawyer on a regular basis, rather than consult once and assume that the law is the same a decade later. The cases below also serve as reminders of the unpredictability of the law.
Three of the most popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with an excessive termination for a safety violation; an harassment complaint based on the prohibited ground of gender and how human resource issues can be challenging for volunteer boards of not-for-profit.
Most people have experience with an employee uniform or dress code policy (mine is “business casual”). There are often very good reasons to have employees look or dress a certain way. It can assist with productivity, promote professionalism and branding, and ensure uniformity. As such, employees’ attire/appearance can be a legitimate concern for employers. However, to the extent that a policy has no rational connection to a business need or unduly infringes on an employee’s self expression, it may be successfully challenged by unions.
Christmas has come early for health and safety professionals in Ontario, with the gift of a new law, Regulation 297/13 added to the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and filed on November 14, 2013. The regulation is the first of its kind in Canada and mandates that all workers and supervisors must complete basic health and safety awareness training.
Three popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with an employer’s miscalculation of the employee’s notice period; how an Alberta employer paid the price for failing to accommodate an employee’s disabilities; and Ontario’s new mandatory occupational health and safety training.
Employers will often seek to respond to downturns in their business by temporarily reducing head count, with the hope of having those employees return to work when the business improves. This is often referred to as a temporary lay off. Many employers inquire as to their right to temporarily lay off employees, generally in response to financial constraints of the business.
Arbitrator Deborah Leighton has made history in her recent decision on remedy in OPSEU (Ranger) v. Ontario (Ministry of Corrections) 2013 CanLii 50479, which was released this past July 2013 by awarding more than $100,000 in damages for breach of the Ontario Human Rights Code and the applicable collective agreement for discrimination, harassment and poisoned work environment.
Two kicks at the can: Worker allowed to re-litigate WSIB accommodation dispute at the Human Rights Tribunal
Most employers are likely familiar with the WSIB return to work process which often involves a WSIB employee attending at the workplace for the purpose of identifying suitable and sustainable work for the injured worker. In circumstances where there is a dispute about whether a position is suitable and/or available, the WSIB will examine the circumstances and make a written decision. The worker and the employer have the right to appeal an adverse decision initially to the WSIB Appeals Branch and ultimately to the independent Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeals Tribunal.
The three most viewed articles on HRinfodesk this week deal with expanding their disability management programs; a zero tolerance approach to a grievance arising from a case of sexual harassment and assault; and the Canada Pension Plan 2014 contribution rates,