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Human Resources Legislative Update

On April 27, 2020, the Ontario government announced its framework for reopening Ontario (Framework), which sets out the criteria the Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH) and health experts will use to advise the government on the timing of and direction for lifting emergency measures, as well as the principles for reopening businesses, services, and…

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On April 22, 2020, the Ontario government issued an Order (O. Reg. 163/20) under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) that applies to not-for-profit entities that receive funding from the Ministry of Health or from a Local Health Integration Network and which provide community mental health and addiction services. The Order applies for the duration of the declared emergency under the EMCPA

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Late last week, the Ontario government amended a number of measures already introduced in light of COVID-19. It updated the “COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool” to include an expanded list of symptoms for which self-isolation is required. It made further orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act regarding health care, an expanded list of essential workers eligible for child care and seasonal campgrounds. The federal government provided more information on initiatives already underway, including with respect to the eligibility requirements for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).

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On April 15, 2020, the Ontario government issued an Order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) that applies to service agencies funded by the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services, and which provide (1) residential or emergency residential services under the Violence Against Women Support Services program or the Anti-Human Trafficking Community Supports program, or (2) provincial crisis line services under the Violence Against Women Support Services program. The Order applies for the duration of the declared emergency under the EMCPA.

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Federal Wage Subsidy Legislation Passed

· 6 min read

On April 11, 2020, Bill C-14, the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act, No. 2, (Bill C-14), received Royal Assent after another emergency session of Parliament. Bill C-14 enacts the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS). It includes new details about which employers are eligible, and the calculation of gross revenue and the subsidy. On the same date, the federal government also updated its backgrounder describing the CEWS, reflecting the final form of the legislation.

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After making its initial announcement about the significantly expanded Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program, the federal government announced on April 8, 2020, that it is introducing additional flexibility to the CEWS, and provided additional details about how the program will operate.

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On April 3, 2020, the Ontario government issued an order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) that applies to service agencies which provide services and supports to adults with developmental disabilities. Under the terms of the order, service agencies shall and are authorized to take, with respect to staffing and work deployment, any reasonably necessary measures to respond to, prevent and alleviate the outbreak of COVID-19.

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During these uncertain times, pension plan administrators must continue to administer their pension plans and provide benefits to members, former members and retired members. Employers and pension plan administrators face a number of upcoming filing and disclosure deadlines and may have challenges in meeting those deadlines as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.