Minimum Wage Increase & Bill 27

Further confirmation that there will be a spring election comes with the Ford government’s announcement that they will hike the minimum wage to $15.00 per hour on January 1, 2022.  This follows the scheduled increase already implemented on October 1st which increased the minimum wage to $14.35.

Bill 27

In addition, the government has unveiled Bill 27 which includes the following employee-friendly changes:

Prohibition on Non-Competes

What’s being proposed: The draft legislation will prevent employers from issuing employment agreements that prohibit staff from engaging in any business, work, occupation, profession or other activity that is in competition with the employer’s business after the employee’s employment ends.

Our take:  it appears exemptions will continue to exist for key-managers and C-level staff for whom these clauses can continue. The reality is that most clauses like this are unenforceable against front-line and mid-level staff. Therefore, this legislation is likely to only reflect what has been happening in courts already for a long time.

Written policy on Disconnecting from Work

What’s being proposed:  Employers with 25 or more employees will be prohibited from “… engaging in work-related communications, including emails, telephone calls, video calls or the sending or reviewing of other messages, so as to be free from the performance of work” outside of scheduled working hours.

Our take: We anticipate that the employees excluded from this new regulation will be similar to those categories of employees currently excluded from overtime under the ESA (meaning Managers, Sales people, IT Staff, and many Professionals will not be covered by this proposed law). For the most part, staff covered by this potential regulation do not tend to respond to communications outside of working hours presently. Therefore, we do not anticipate any significant impact when this new regulation comes into effect.

We will continue to keep you updated on new developments. For more information contact us at SHRP.

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