On December 2, 2021, the Working for Workers Act, 2021 received Royal Assent. The Employment Standards Act, 2000 has been amended:
Written policy on disconnecting from work
Employers that employ 25 or more employees on January 1 of any year must have a written policy on disconnecting from work in place by March 1 of that year and provide a copy of that policy to employees. “Disconnecting from work” is defined in the ESA. A transitional provision establishes that employers that meet the 25-employee threshold on January 1, 2022 have until June 2, 2022 to meet the new requirement to have a written policy in place.
Non-compete agreements prohibited
Employers are prohibited (with some exceptions), from entering into a non-compete agreement with an employee. “Non-compete agreement” is defined in the ESA. This prohibition does not apply to non-compete agreements entered into before October 25, 2021.
A system for licensing requirements of temporary help agencies and recruiters
On a date to be set by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, amendments that establish a system for the licensing of temporary help agencies and recruiters will come into force.
Amendments to the Employment Protection for Foreign Nationals Act, 2009
The Employment Protection for Foreign Nationals Act, 2009 (EPFNA) has been amended:
Knowingly using recruiters charging unlawful fees prohibited
There is a new prohibition against using the services of a recruiter where it is known that the recruiter has charged an unlawful fee to a foreign national. There is also a new provision for joint and several liability for the repayment of unlawfully charged fees.
If you need help understanding your responsibilities and rights under the ESA, you can:
Visit Your guide to the Employment Standards Act at Ontario.ca/ESAguide
Call the Employment Standards Information Centre at 1-800-531-5551 or TTY (for hearing impaired) at 1-866-567-8893. Information is available in many languages.
If you need help understanding your responsibilities and rights under the EPFNA, you can:
Visit the Employment Protection for Foreign Nationals home page at Ontario.ca/EPFNA