On March 11, 2020 the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic. Although it has been ravaging other parts of the world for some time, its presence has manifested most acutely in Canada and in Ontario over the past few weeks.
The pandemic has presented significant new challenges for workers, from healthcare workers and first responders on the front lines of the crisis to service industry and other workers who face layoffs as their workplaces shut down.
We’ve prepared a memo that addresses many of the workplace legal issues employees and unions are dealing with as a result of COVID-19. It addresses some of the most common questions we have been receiving from our clients regarding the many legal issues which are engaged by the pandemic.
You can download the memo here. It covers:
- emergency powers exercised by the government of Ontario
- occupational health and safety issues arising in workplaces that continue to operate
- leaves and benefits available for those unable to work for reasons related to COVID-19
- the availability of termination and severance benefits for those laid off from their jobs
- human rights issues arising out of the pandemic
- issues facing temporary foreign workers