ESA Changes Impacting Your Workplace – Bill 66 Update to ESA …And other legislative changes

Bill 66, Restoring Ontario’s Competitiveness Act, introduces new changes to the Employment Standards Act. Bill 66 was introduced on December 6, 2018 and received Royal Assent and is in force as of April 3, 2019.

Here is a summary of the changes so you can plan for necessary changes to processes or policies within your organization:

Repeal of Requirement for Director’s Approval

  • Employers will no longer be required to seek approval from the Director of Employment Standards to implement an agreement to work above 48 hours in a week.

Overtime Averaging

  • Overtime will only be allowed to be averaged over a period of not more than four (4) weeks (the agreement must include a start date and an expiry date); and
  • Director of Employment Standards will no longer need to approve the overtime-averaging agreements between an employee and their employer.

ESA Poster

  • Employers will not be required to post the ESA informational poster in their workplace (information about ESA entitlements and their regulations provided by the government).
    • This poster must still be provided to employees by the employer.

As a result of these changes another review of policies and processes will be necessary for organizations. Some of the following areas need to be considered:

  • Policy manuals and procedures reviewed and updated;
    • Scheduling (overtime averaging and excess hours) processes reviewed and adapted;
  • Continue to provide the ESA Poster to employees; and,
  • Leadership, payroll, finance and HR teams updated and trained.

The Labour Relations Act (LRA) has also been amended by Bill 66:

Non-Construction Employers (not in force yet – date has not been announced)

  • An amended definition of “non-construction employers” has been added to the LRA, to whom the construction industry provisions will no longer apply (i.e. a trade union will no longer represent employees working for those non-construction employers).
    • Municipalities, Local Boards, School Boards, Hospitals, Colleges and Universities, and public bodies are deemed “non-construction employers”.

Are you ready for these changes?

Pesce & Associates is working with clients to ensure they are compliant with Bill 66. If you want to be compliant, contact us now! We would be happy to make a presentation to your leadership team on the impact of the changes and/or make recommendations on what you need to consider.

Pesce & Associates will be providing updates regarding upcoming legislation as information is released. Reach out to our Managing Partner, Elizabeth Hill at 416.491.1501 ext. 23 or to discuss how we can help.

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