The Ontario government has announced that Ontario employers are now required to apply a COVID-19 screening test to employees and essential visitors before they enter the workplace.
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way companies operate. Employees working from home is our new normal and this new reality means a number of unique issues for your organization.
The COVID-19 leave available under the Canada Labour Code has been extended an additional 4 weeks, from 24 weeks to 28 weeks, effective September 4, 2020. This change is to align the leave with the recent increase to the number of weeks an employee can receive the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).
On Thursday, September 3, 2020, the Ontario government announced that it would be extending the temporary relief measures from the termination and severance provisions of the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) until January 2, 2021. The temporary measures are found in Ontario Regulation 228/20, Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (IDEL Regulation), and had been set to expire today (September 4, 2020). The IDEL Regulation has been amended to define the “COVID-19 period” as that period beginning on March 1, 2020 and ending on January 2, 2021
The federal government has announced that it proposes to extend the current treatment of employees on leave with pay under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program by four weeks, from August 30, 2020 to September 26, 2020 (CEWS claim period 7).
In the latest evolution of the federal government’s response to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, on August 19, 2020, amendments to the Employment Insurance Act (EI Act) were published and, on August 20, 2020, the government announced new measures to support affected Canadians who continue to be unable to work due to COVID-19.
The federal government has announced a temporary policy change that will permit visitors currently in Canada who have a valid job offer to apply for, and receive, an employer-specific work permit without having to leave Canada, effective August 24, 2020.
The federal government has announced the launch of an updated online calculator to help employers prepare for the next period of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program. Employers can use the updated CEWS calculator for claim periods 1 through 5, and more periods will be added as they become available.
Ontario employers who are planning for an eventual return to work have been keeping a close eye on the province’s COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool (Tool). The Tool directs Ontarians to self-isolate in certain circumstances. This is important because it relates to employers’ Occupational Health and Safety Act duties and their duty to provide statutorily-protected leaves under the Employment Standards Act, 2000.
Bill C-20, An Act respecting further COVID-19 measures, which passed on July 27, 2020, has enacted new legislation that permits the temporary suspension or extension of time limits or other periods specified in federal legislation or in court proceedings governed by federal legislation that are difficult or impossible to meet in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.