The government of Canada announced, on July 19, 2021, that the Canada-U.S. border, which has been closed to non-discretionary travel since March 21, 2020, will be reopened for eligible Americans on August 9, 2021, at 12:01 AM EST, and September 7, 2021, for those elsewhere in the world.
The Pay Equity Act, which Canada’s federal government passed in 2018, is going into effect on August 31, 2021. The act aims to address the systemic gender-based discrimination faced by women in federally regulated sectors by achieving pay equity through proactive measures. The act will require all federally regulated employers to analyze their compensation practices, even if they have not received a complaint and even if they believe there is no wage gap in their organization.
In its recent ruling in Hawkes v Max Aicher (North America) Limited, 2021 ONSC 4290, the Ontario Divisional Court ruled on an application for judicial review that the entire payroll of an employer that terminates the employment of an Ontario-based employee should be used to determine whether the employer’s payroll is at least $2.5 million per year, and therefore whether severance pay may apply. This decision reversed a ruling from the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) that was based on previous case law finding that only an employer’s Ontario payroll was considered for the severance pay threshold.
In order to address the economic impact of COVID-19 on Ontario’s businesses, in June 2020 the Ontario government created a special leave called “infectious disease emergency leave” (IDEL) through Ontario Regulation 228/20 (O. Reg. 228/20).
The Québec government recently proposed changes to the Charter of the French Language (also known as “Bill 101”) by presenting Bill 96, An Act Respecting French, the Official and Common Language of Québec, on May 12, 2021. The new bill notably aims to increase the use of French in workplaces and public spaces.