Ontario Moves to Modified Step 2 due to Surge in COVID-19 Cases

On January 3, 2022, the Ontario government announced that in light of the surge in COVID-19 cases, the province will be moving to modified Rules for Areas in Stage 2 of its Roadmap to Reopen plan. These changes will come into effect on January 5, 2022 at 12:01 a.m. and will remain in effect until…

Ontario Announces Further Capacity Limit Reductions in Light of Omicron

On December 17, 2021, the Ontario government announced it is taking further public heath measures in light of the rapidly spreading Omicron variant. The new measures significantly expand upon the December 15 announcement reducing capacity limits to 50% in certain settings with a usual capacity of 1000 or more. Effective December 19, 2021, the following…

Arbitrator Upholds Mandatory Vaccination Policy

On November 9, 2021, Arbitrator Von Veh upheld the mandatory vaccination policy (Policy) implemented by a security company, finding the company acted reasonably in implementing the Policy and that it did not breach the collective agreement. The award provides some helpful guidance for employers that have implemented similar policies.  In United Food And Commercial Workers…

Ontario Court Denies Injunctive Relief Pending Action Challenging Employer’s Vaccination Policy

On October 29, 2021, Justice Dunphy of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice declined to extend emergency injunctive relief to a group of University Health Network (UHN) employees, seeking reprieve from UHN’s Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Policy (Policy) which required employees to either become fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by October 22, 2021, or be terminated from…

Updated Guidance on ROE Codes to be Used for Non-Compliance with Workplace Vaccination Policies

On October 15, 2021, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) updated its website page EI information for employers – COVID-19 with respect to Block 16 – Reasons for issuing this ROE (record of employment). Block 16 is used to indicate the reason for the employee’s leave or separation from employment, or why the ROE is…

Ontario Eases Capacity Limits in Select Settings

On October 8, 2021, the Ontario government announced that would be “cautiously” lifting capacity limits in select settings where proof of full vaccination is required, effective October 9, 2021. O. Reg. 698/21, amending O. Reg. 364/20, the Rules for Areas at Step 3 and at the Roadmap Exit Step, gives effect to these changes. For…

Ontario Announces Rapid Antigen Testing for Schools and Licensed Child Care Settings

On October 5, 2021, the Ontario government announced that it is increasing access to rapid antigen COVID-19 testing for schools and licensed child care settings, where there is increased risk of transmission of COVID-19. The program will provide rapid screening for unvaccinated and asymptomatic children and students. The testing will be done on a voluntary…

Ontario Announces Mandatory Vaccination Requirements for Long-Term Care Homes

On October 1, 2021, the Ontario government announced that COVID-19 vaccinations will become mandatory for all in-home staff, support workers, students, and volunteers in long-term care homes, unless a valid medical exemption is presented. These individuals will have until November 15, 2021 to show proof that they have received all required doses of a COVID-19…

Ontario Eases Capacity Limits for Certain Indoor and Outdoor Settings

On September 24, 2021, the Ontario government announced that effective September 25, 2021 at 12:01 am, it is easing capacity limits for certain indoor and outdoor settings where proof of vaccination is required. Proof of vaccination will also be required for additional specified outdoor settings. Ontario Regulation 678/21 amends Ontario Regulation 364/20, Rules for Areas…