Employer rules for temporary foreign workers in Canada

February 12, 2017 - by: Stéphane Aublet 0 COMMENTS

by Stéphane Aublet

A work permit is generally issued based on a specific job offer made by a particular Canadian employer (or an employer doing business in Canada). As such, the employer commits itself to providing the foreign worker with wages, working conditions, and employment that are similar to the terms set out in the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application submitted to Service Canada.

If the employment is exempt from the LMIA (for example, transfer within a company, North American Free Trade Agreement professional, etc.), the employer commits to providing the foreign worker with wages, working conditions, and employment that are similar to the terms set out in the offer of employment submitted via Immigration Canada’s Employer Portal.

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Quebec City shootings: What can we learn from this tragedy?

February 02, 2017 - by: Brian Smeenk 1 COMMENTS

By Brian Smeenk

Six innocent men were shot in the back while praying in a Quebec City mosque on January 29. The apparently racially motivated act of violence makes us all pause to reflect. How could this happen? In a peaceful city like that? In a peaceful country like Canada? What is happening in our society that would give rise to such hateful violence?  Flag of Quebec

Perhaps we can all learn something from such a tragedyincluding HR professionals, business managers, and even lawyers. Canadians and Americans alike.

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Safety incidents: the right to remain silent versus the obligation to speak

January 29, 2017 - by: Deanah Shelly 0 COMMENTS

by Deanah Shelly

What if this happens at your Canadian facility: One of your employees witnesses a workplace incident. Soon, enforcement officers are on-site investigating the incident. They may be police officers, health and safety inspectors, or environmental officers. One of the investigating officers asks the employee to assist and provide a witness statement. What should the employee do? What are the employee’s rights?

This split-second decision can have long-term and far-reaching legal implications for that employee, the employee’s coworkers, and your organization. Employees in such a situation might risk being charged with obstructing justice or inadvertently providing evidence to implicate themselves or others.

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Taking the high road: Marijuana at work could trigger obligations to question

January 22, 2017 - by: Cory Sully 0 COMMENTS

by Cory Sully

While access to medical marijuana has increased in Canada over the last few years, the consumption of medical marijuana has arguably become less taboo with the new Trudeau government’s pledge to eventually legalize and regulate this substance.

In the summer of 2016, the government made the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR), which allows individuals to legally consume marijuana for medical purposes if they meet certain criteria. The ACMPR is designed to allow individuals to access and use marijuana, notably by producing their own cannabis or designating someone to do so for them.

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Alberta Court of Appeal helps employers ring in the New Year in Style(s)

January 15, 2017 - by: Kyla Stott-Jess 0 COMMENTS

by Kyla Stott-Jess

The Alberta Court of Appeal has released its first decision of 2017Styles v. Alberta Investment Management Corporation, 2017 ABCA 1and it is undoubtedly welcome news (and a nice gift) to employers.

The issue of whether or not a dismissed employee is entitled to bonus compensation during the period of reasonable notice has been a hot topic as of late. In Styles, the Alberta Court of Appeal weighed in and concluded that (1) in the event of a without-cause termination, an employer is not obligated to provide the employee with reasons for the termination; and (2) employees are not entitled to bonus payouts where they have not met the contractual preconditions. Suffice it to say, Styles looks to be ringing in a better 2017 for employers.

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Duty to disclose medical condition in pre-employment questionnaire

January 08, 2017 - by: Simon Laberge 0 COMMENTS

by Simon Laberge

This article discusses questioning employees about essential functions when hiring in Canada.

Trust is a fundamental element in the relationship between an employer and an employee. That relationship of trust can be breached in various ways during the course of employment including during the hiring process when an employer questions candidates to determine if they are capable of performing the essential duties of the position they are seeking.

The courts have often been asked to rule about the consequences of misrepresentation by a candidate during the hiring process. In fact, in 2012 the Quebec Court of Appeal in Syndicat des infirmières, inhalothérapeutes, infirmières auxiliaires du Cœur du Québec (SIIIACQ) v. Centre hospitalier régional de Trois-Rivières, 2012 QCCA 1867 (in French only).confirmed that in certain circumstances, termination of employment was justified.

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9 steps employers can take to address mental illness at work

January 01, 2017 - by: Eowynne Noble 0 COMMENTS

By Eowynne Noble

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a common type of depression, often arises when the daylight hours get shorter, according to the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, a leading Canadian hospital. With the winter months upon us, many of us will experience the winter blues, but for some the blues may be a sign of SAD and may continue for months with minimal relief. As such, during these winter months it is of increased importance that employers in Canada ensure they have the proper programs in place to address mental illness in the workplace.

The statistics
The following statistics highlight the importance of taking steps to deal with mental illness in the workplace: read more…

When are criminal charges none of your business?

December 25, 2016 - by: Hannah Roskey 0 COMMENTS

by Hannah Roskey

Off-duty misconduct could lead to an employee’s dismissal. But a recent court decision in Ontario suggests that the circumstances where that will amount to just cause for termination are quite limited. The court found that an employee who had been fired after being criminally charged with sexual assault was wrongfully dismissed. The employee was awarded damages.

Background
Merritt was a 67-year-old laborer with Tigercat Industries. The company produces forestry and industrial machines. It has several production facilities in Ontario. Merritt was hired in 1998. He was fired in February 2015. The company said it had just cause.

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Quebec Court of Appeal: People (not workplace policies) harass people

December 18, 2016 - by: Alexis Charpentier 0 COMMENTS

by Alexis Charpentier

Workplace harassment is a complicated and evolving area of the law. The lines between an employer’s right to manage its employees and harassment are often blurred. Fortunately, the Court of Appeal of Québec has provided some clarity in a recent decision in Syndicat des travailleurs de l’aluminium d’Alma, local 9490 (Syndicat des métallos, section locale 9490) c. Rio Tinto Alcan, usine d’Alma (2016 QCCA 879) by confirming that a workplace policy addressing the employer’s right to manage medical absences cannot, in and of itself, constitute harassment of employees.

Facts

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Strangers at the table: Employers may need to accept observers in collective bargaining

December 11, 2016 - by: David McDonald 0 COMMENTS

by David McDonald

In Canada, collective agreements are generally accessible to the public. Canadian jurisdictions provide mechanisms to file collective agreements with government authorities, and it is not uncommon for the union or the employer to post their agreement on the web. However, the process of bargaining itself is private and typically carefully guarded by the parties. This allows for a free flow of information between the parties in order to achieve better negotiations.

In a recent case, a Canadian labor board was faced with a difficult question: What happens when one side tries to bring “observers” to the negotiation table? Surprisingly, the board ruled that observers could have a seat at the table.

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