Monday, October 21, 2019 is federal election day.  Under the Canada Elections Act, employees who are eligible to vote are entitled to three consecutive hours of time off to vote without a reduction in pay. The three consecutive hours must fall within the open hours of local polling stations, which are as follows:

Electoral District Time Zone Voting Hours
Newfoundland and Atlantic Time Zones 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Eastern Time Zone 9:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Central Time Zone* 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Mountain Time Zone* 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Pacific Time Zone 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

* In Saskatchewan, special hours are in effect as this year’s election falls during daylight saving time. Voting hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., local time.

If an employee’s schedule already accommodates voting time requirements, then the employer is not required to make scheduling adjustments.  However, where an employee’s normal work schedule does not accommodate voting time requirements, the employer must determine which hours will be used to accommodate voting time requirements.  On polling day, employees must be paid the same amount they would have been paid had they not exercised their right to voting time.

Example

For example, consider an employee in Vancouver who would normally be scheduled to work from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on October 21, 2019.  Because there are less than three consecutive local voting hours before and after that employee’s shift, the employer must adjust the schedule to satisfy the voting time requirements. Here are three options that will satisfy the voting requirement:

  • The employer could delay the employee’s start time until 10:30 a.m. to ensure the employee has three consecutive hours of voting time prior to his or her shift.
  • The employer could end the employee’s shift at 4:30 p.m. to ensure the employee has three consecutive hours of voting time after his or her shift.
  • The employer could permit the employee to be absent for three consecutive hours during his or her shift.

On the other hand, an employee in Toronto working those same hours (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) has more than three consecutive hours to vote after work. The employer would not have to adjust the employee’s schedule.

Penalties

Employers who reduce pay or fail to satisfy the voting time requirements may be liable for a fine of up to $2,000, and/or imprisonment for up to three months, for each violation of the Canada Elections Act.

  • Many thanks to Jan Nato for his assistance with this article.

We’re pleased to share an informative article in which our colleague, Salvador Pasquel Villegas, provides his insight as to how employers in Mexico should approach the new labour relations environment brought on by the recent legislative reform. The article, published by the Society for Human Resource Management, is accessible here.

 

 

Forty percent of Canadian workers experience bullying on a weekly basis. Moreover, 7% of adult internet users in Canada self-reported experiencing cyberbullying at some point in their life. The most common form of cyberbullying involves receiving threatening or aggressive emails or instant messages.[1] Continue Reading Beyond the Playground: Stamping out Workplace Cyberbullying

We’re thrilled to announce the release of a new edition of The Global Employer: Focus on Global Immigration & Mobility.

This handbook is the go-to resource for in-house counsel, human resource managers and global relocation professionals to identify key mobility issues — ranging from business immigration and compliance, to employment and compensation. It provides strategic guidance and need-to-know information to help employers manage cross-border movement of managers, professionals, trainees and business visitors.

Click here to request a complimentary copy for yourself or your colleagues.

Companies worldwide face rising pressure to comply with international labour and human rights standards both within their operations and in their supply chains. In addition to the harmful impact on workers, failing to address labour and human rights risks can result in serious brand damage and legal risk, with consequent financial implications for the business. We’re pleased to share our recent Bloomberg publication, here, with an update on existing and proposed legislation and best practices for mitigating risk.

Originally published in Bloomberg Law August 2019. Reproduced with permission. Copyright 2019 The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. www.bna.com

 

Changes to the Canada Labour Code (“CLC” or “Code”) are effective on September 1, 2019, or on a date to be named. To ensure compliance, federally regulated employers should review their policies and practices.

This is part two of a two-part series summarizing the changes.  Part one focused on federal employment standards related to vacation, holiday and leave entitlements.  This part summarizes the remaining changes. Continue Reading Now Effective: Changes to the Canada Labour Code (Part Two)

Changes to the Canada Labour Code (“CLC” or “Code”) are effective on September 1, 2019.  To ensure compliance, federally regulated employers should review their policies and procedures.

This is part one of a two part series summarizing changes to the Code.  This part focuses on federal employment standards related to vacation, holiday and leave entitlements.  The remaining changes will be summarized in part two. Continue Reading Now Effective: Changes to the Canada Labour Code (Part One)

Employers often wish to enter new or updated employment agreements with existing employees. The driving force is typically that circumstances have changed, but it can also be that the employer simply wants different or additional terms. However, the employer must give the employee valid consideration, otherwise the new or updated agreement will not be enforceable. Continue Reading A New Contract for a Current Employee? Consider the Consideration!

We’re in a period of unprecedented transformation, driven by technological development, globalization and significant demographic changes. Our world is hyper-connected, and the pace of change is rapid, bringing social and political transformation and creating profound global shifts in expectations. Global employers must evolve at speed to meet these disruptive forces head-on and to thrive in this future of work.

To help you chart your course, we’re delighted to share key messages and insights from our fourth Global Employer Forum, here, along with a short video, here, featuring Ian Goldin, Oxford University Professor and Director of the Oxford Martin Programme, in conversation with our colleague, Guenther Heckelmann, on adapting to rapid globalization and thriving in the age of discovery.