Federal Worker Rights Safeguarded in Canada

Employment and Social Development Canada

The Government of Canada is growing the economy in a way that helps every generation get ahead. This includes fair protection for working Canadians by tackling the big issues in our workplaces and in our society that are holding workers back.

Today, Minister of Labour, Seamus O'Regan Jr., welcomed royal assent of legislative changes to support federally regulated employees when it comes to accessing the benefits and protections they're entitled to, maintaining a healthy work-life balance and having the time they need for health challenges or becoming a parent.

More specifically, these changes to the Canada Labour Code will:

  • protect gig workers' access to the rights, protections and entitlements of employees under each part of the Code by strengthening the prohibition against misclassification, including through a presumption of employee status.
  • improve work-life balance by requiring employers to issue right to disconnect policies in consultation with employees or unions;
  • support workers who have experienced the loss of a pregnancy with a new three-day paid leave; and,
  • bring in a new 16-week unpaid leave for parents welcoming children by adoption or surrogacy, ensuring they have job protection when they access a corresponding Employment Insurance benefit once it is fully implemented.

The Minister commends the many employers who provide benefits and leaves that go above and beyond the minimum standards of the Labour Code. For workers in workplaces where this is not the case, these changes represent the new minimum standards that all employers will be held to in federally regulated industries. Changes to better protect gig workers come into effect immediately; all other changes will require regulations and are expected to come into effect next year to ensure employers have enough time to prepare.

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