Category: Employment & Labour

No Holiday for Employers: Summer Legislative Update

July 9, 2014

2014 MINIMUM WAGE INCREASES Ontario Increases Minimum Wage   On June 1, 2014, the general minimum wage in Ontario became C$11 per hour. This is reflected in amendments to Regulation 285/01 of the Employment Standards Act, 2000. The regulation also provides the minimum wage rates for students, liquor servers, homeworkers and hunting/fishing guides, which also increased effective June 1, 2014. What…

Dazed and Confused: Alberta Arbitration Board Disagrees on How to Apply Top Court Ruling on Alcohol and Drug Testing

June 12, 2014

The Alberta Arbitration Board’s (Board) decision on random alcohol and drug testing in Unifor, Local 707A v. Suncor Energy Inc., Oil Sands has attracted significant media attention and commentary, following in the wake of the Supreme Court of Canada’s ruling on random alcohol testing last year. A majority of the Board held that Suncor Energy’s proposed implementation of random alcohol and drug…

Québec Court of Appeal Reiterates Principles Applicable to Notices of Termination

April 30, 2014

  In its recent decision in Allstate du Canada c. Daunais, the Court of Appeal of Québec overturned a judgment of the Superior Court of Québec and confirmed the exceptional nature of awarding 24 months’ notice of termination and the obligation of employees to mitigate damages resulting from termination of employment.   In this case, the employee, who was 52 years…

Leadership Series: Promoting Engagement and a Positive Work Environment

April 9, 2014

Presentation Slides – Promoting Engagement and a Positive Work Environment – April 9, 2014 [PDF] Recent studies conducted by Gallup, Inc. have examined the concept of engagement in the workplace. The researchers have divided employees into three categories of engagement. They describe them in the following way: Engaged: These were seen as the “best colleagues. They cooperate to build an organization,…

Top 10 Issues for Employers, #4: Background Checking in Canada​​

April 3, 2014

This is the fourth instalment in our Top 10 Issues for Employers series. This issue focuses on legislation to be considered by employers when implementing policies and procedures for background checking in Canada.   OVERVIEW   Conducting background checks into the educational, employment, criminal or credit history of candidates for employment can form part of a company’s recruitment processes. Below is…

Say on Pay: Is the Canadian Future Voluntary?

March 27, 2014

  With the annual meeting season now underway, Canadian public companies that have not done so may be considering whether they will voluntarily adopt a Say-on-Pay shareholder vote – a shareholder vote approving the company’s approach to executive compensation.   There is no Canadian legal requirement to present a Say-on-Pay vote, nor does it appear there will be any such…

Québec Superior Court Invalidates Sections 76.3 and 76.5 of Pay Equity Act

March 5, 2014

  In the recent Québec Superior Court decision in Alliance du personnel professionnel et technique de la santé et des services sociaux c. Québec (Procureur général) (Alliance Decision), Justice Édouard Martin declared sections 76.3 and 76.5 of the Pay Equity Act (PEA) to be invalid, inapplicable and of no force or effect because they affect the right to equal salary for equivalent work without…

Canadian Clawbacks: Increasing But Still Voluntary

January 16, 2014

  “Clawbacks” are arrangements under which an employee forfeits previously awarded compensation, usually either as a result of a misstatement of the employer’s financial statements, misconduct or “bad behaviour” of the employee or, more commonly, a combination of both. Clawback mechanisms can be used to cancel unvested awards or recoup proceeds from vested awards and can apply to various types…

Alberta’s New Compassionate Care Leave

January 13, 2014

  On Feb. 1, 2014, Alberta will join other Canadian jurisdictions in requiring employers to provide compassionate care leave to employees. Amendments to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code will provide eligible employees with up to eight weeks of unpaid leave to care for or support a seriously ill family member for whom the employee is the primary caregiver.   In order to qualify…

Top 10 Issues for Employers, #3: Guidelines for Workplace Investigations

October 8, 2013

This is the third instalment in our Top 10 Issues for Employers series. This issue focuses on guidelines for workplace investigations touching upon key considerations including assessing complaints and witness interviews. OVERVIEW Both complaints and workplace investigations should be handled in a fair, objective manner focusing on assessing the facts at hand and avoiding hastily drawn conclusions and whispered conversations…