Archives: Health and Safety

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COVID-19 FAQs for Employers – March 26 update

FAQs for Employers – Frequently asked questions by employers needing more information on the impact, rules and best practices for addressing the global coronavirus outbreak. (Last Updated March 26, 2020). Further free resources can be found here. Should you need legal advice on how to manage your workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak, please get in … Continue Reading

COVID-19 FAQs for Employers – March 23 update

FAQs for Employers – Frequently asked questions by employers needing more information on the impact, rules and best practices for addressing the global coronavirus outbreak. (Last Updated March 23, 2020). Further free resources can be found here. Should you need legal advice on how to manage your workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak, please get in touch.… Continue Reading

Ontario’s New Infectious Disease Emergencies Leave

On Thursday, March 19, 2020, the Ontario Legislature passed Bill 186, Employment Standards Amendment Act (Infectious Disease Emergencies), 2020 (“the Bill”).  The Bill amends the Ontario Employment Standards Act (ESA) adding new job protection for employees affected by COVID-19. This job protection is retroactive to January 25, 2020.  What is the Leave and Do I … Continue Reading

COVID-19 FAQs for Employers – March 18 update

FAQs for Employers – Frequently asked questions by employers needing more information on the impact, rules and best practices for addressing the global coronavirus outbreak. (Last Updated March 18, 2020). Further free resources can be found here. Should you need legal advice on how to manage your workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak, please get in … Continue Reading

COVID-19 FAQs for Employers – March 17 update

FAQs for Employers – Frequently asked questions by employers needing more information on the impact, rules and best practices for addressing the global coronavirus outbreak. (Last Updated March 17, 2020). Further free resources can be found here. Should you need legal advice on how to manage your workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak, please get in … Continue Reading

Proposed Changes to the Ontario Employment Standards Act in the Face of the Pandemic

I think we can all agree that the world is a little bonkers lately –  it seems like things are changing and getting more serious by the minute. Between the time I thought I was finished writing and ready to press “publish” Ontario declared a state of emergency.  We are getting lots of questions from … Continue Reading

COVID-19 FAQs for Employers

FAQs for Employers – Frequently asked questions by employers needing more information on the impact, rules and best practices for addressing the global coronavirus outbreak. (Last Updated March 16, 2020). Further free resources can be found here. Should you need legal advice on how to manage your workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak, please get in … Continue Reading

Surveillance in the Workplace

Workplace privacy is an evolving and somewhat muddy area of law. In Ontario, our key employment law statutes, the Employment Standards Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Act, are silent on the issue of privacy. Yet surveillance is ubiquitous. Employers often have cameras in the workplace, which end up providing them information about their … Continue Reading

Public Health Emergencies and the Workplace

The Wuhan Novel Coronavirus (or 2019-vCoV) is a public health emergency in Canada with confirmed cases in Ontario. This has led many employers to ask how they should manage their employees’ concerns, while still trying to operate “business as usual”.  On the one hand, employers are obligated to provide a healthy and safe work environment, … Continue Reading

Know Your Legal Obligations for Co-Op Students

Cooperative education programs have become a crucial part of the educational experience as students and institutions recognize that on the job training enhances the overall educational experience. A good co-op can ground a student’s in-class learning by introducing them to practical “real world” problems. If the placement goes well, students may be offered a job … Continue Reading

Tips for Having a Great (and Responsible) Holiday Party

Holiday parties are a great opportunity for employers to engage with their employees in a relaxed atmosphere. While it is important for everyone to enjoy themselves in the lead up to the holidays, employers should try to strike a balance between having a good time and an atmosphere reminiscent of the kind of antics you … Continue Reading

Power Imbalances and Romance in the Workplace

McDonald’s is in the news this week after their Board told their CEO, Steve Easterbrook, to “move on” after learning that he had been engaging in a romantic relationship with an employee. While the relationship was “consensual,” McDonald’s policy forbids managers from having romantic relationships with subordinates – whether they directly supervise them or otherwise. … Continue Reading

Ministry of Labour Inspections

The Ministry of Labour (MOL or the Ministry) has been busy implementing its Healthy and Safe Ontario Workplaces Strategy. Introduced by the previous Wynne government, the initiative has focused on small Ontario industrial businesses. A small business is one with fewer than 50 workers.  Occupational Health and Safety Act Inspections In late August, the Ministry … Continue Reading

Top 10 mistakes to avoid when hiring your first employee

For this week’s blog, we have gathered a list of the top 10 mistakes commonly made by freelancers and startups when hiring their first employee.  Avoiding these pitfalls will help start you off on the right foot and avoid the hiring headaches! We’ve also covered our Top 10 list in this month’s SpringForward Legal Updates … Continue Reading

Fired by a robot!

Amazon has been in the news recently for its practice of tracking warehouse workers’ box packing speed and firing them if they do not “make rate.”  According to internal Amazon documents, related to a termination at a Baltimore Maryland warehouse location, Amazon’s automated tracking system automatically generates a series of warnings. After 6 warnings in … Continue Reading

Sexual Harassment in the Fundraising Donor Space – Part Two

Firstly, Happy May Day and Happy International Workers’ Day! This week we will be continuing our series on Sexual Harassment in the Fundraising Donor Space and exploring situations where needed donations or funding come with strings attached. If you haven’t read our Part One from last week, you may want to check it out before … Continue Reading

Sexual Harassment in the Fundraising Donor Space – Part One

We have talked a lot about workplace sexual harassment on this blog. Practising exclusively in workplace law we, unfortunately, see the issue of workplace sexual harassment come up a lot. Helping employers and employees of all shapes and sizes deal with issues related to sexual harassment makes up a lot of what we do. Employer … Continue Reading

Alternative Dispute Resolution in Employment Law – Part 1

The practice of law has changed.  The days of the gun-slinging Harvey Specter-esque litigator, sipping single malt scotch whiskey and ready to obliterate his opponent at a moment’s notice, has given way to a new breed of tech-savvy, collaborative and cost-conscious lawyers who are more concerned with serving their clients’ personal and business needs than … Continue Reading

Top 5 Employment Law Cases of 2018

By: Hilary Page and Lisa Stam 2018 was a whirlwind of statutory changes in the employment law world, which has perhaps overshadowed the judicial developments that have taken place in courts. In today’s post, we turn to all things case law and give our picks for the top 5 employment law cases of 2018. Amberber … Continue Reading

Another Cannabis Update

This post is a quick update to our past posts on the legalization of cannabis. You can see everything we have written about the legalization of cannabis and how to prepare your workplace here. More changes are afoot to Ontario’s planned rollout of recreational cannabis. The Doug Ford government has reversed the previous administration’s plan … Continue Reading

Can Employers Require High Heels in the Workplace?

Not for much longer…  Last month, Ontario Liberal MPP Cristina Martins’ bill to ban mandatory high heels in the workplace sped through the legislature.  The bill, titled the Putting Your Best Foot Forward Act, 2017 passed first reading on October 17, 2017, second reading on October 19, 2017, and has been referred to the standing … Continue Reading

Criminal Code Convictions for Worker Safety

Yesterday, the Ontario Court of Appeal tripled the fine awarded against a construction company that failed to ensure the safety of its workers:  R v Metron Construction. Facts In the late afternoon of December 24, 2009, five workers who were restoring the concrete balconies of a high rise in Toronto fell from a fourteenth floor swing stage … Continue Reading
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