Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017

Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017

In November the Liberal Government in Ontario passed a number of changes to our labour laws.

Below are some of the highlights:

  • From January 1, 2018 minimum wage increased from $11.60 an hour to $14 per hour; this will be followed by a bump to $15 per hour in 2019;
  • Equal pay for equal work – casual, part-time, temporary and seasonal workers will receive the same as full-time when they are “substantially” doing the same job for the same employer;
  • Employers must pay their employees three hours of wages if they cancel a shift with less than 48 hours notice (weather dependent work is exempted);
  • Scheduling – Bill 148 is full of changes to how bosses can schedule their hires for shifts. For example: if an employee has worked somewhere for more than three months, the law allows them to request schedule/location changes“without fear of reprisal”;
  • Employees can refuse shifts without repercussion if their employer gives less than four days notice;
  • Pregnancy Leave – extended leave for employees who suffer a stillbirth or miscarriage from 6 weeks to 12 weeks;
  • Parental Leave - the primary change is an increased leave entitlement from 35 weeks to 61 weeks (for employees who take pregnancy leave), and from 37 to 63 weeks (for employees who did not take a pregnancy leave);
  • Vacation - employers must provide their workers with a minimum of three weeks of paid vacation if the employees have been working for them for five years or more;
  • Paid personal emergency leave is extended to all workers, not just those at a business with 50 or more employees. Bill 148 entitles all workers to 10 personal emergency leave days a year, with two of them paid. The employee is not required to provide a sick note;
  • Victims of domestic or sexual violence, or parents of children who have experienced or are threatened with it, will get five days of paid leave and 17 weeks of job-protected, unpaid leave.

For further details of Bill 148 please visit this link:


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