In December, legislation proposing the addition of new leave
provisions to Ontario's Employment Standards Act, 2000
("ESA") received first reading. If Bill 30,
An Act to amend the Employment Standards Act, 2000 in respect
of family caregiver leave is ultimately passed the
ESA will be amended to include "Family Caregiver
Leave" which will provide for unpaid and protected job leave
for employees who have to provide care and support to a sick or
injured family member.
Family Caregiver Leave would allow an employee a leave of
absence without pay to provide care or support to a family member
who has a serious medical condition. The legislation requires an
employee to provide a certificate from a "qualified health
practitioner" upon his or her employer's request stating
that his or her family member has a serious medical condition.
The contemplated leave is up to eight weeks per calendar year
with respect to each family member set out in the legislation and
must be taken in periods of entire weeks. Moreover, the entitlement
to Family Caregiver Leave is in addition to an employee's
entitlement to Family Medical Leave (up to eight weeks) or Personal
Emergency Leave (10 days) already available under the
For the purposes of Family Caregiver Leave, a family member
The employee's spouse;
A parent, step-parent or foster parent of the employee or the
A child, step-child or foster child of the employee or the
A grandparent, step-grandparent, grandchild or step-grandchild
of the employee or the employee's spouse;
The spouse of a child of the employee;
The employee's brother or sister;
A relative of the employee who is dependent on the employee for
care or assistance; and
Any individual prescribed as a family member for the purposes
of this section.
An employee who wishes to take a Family Caregiver Leave will be
required to advise his or her employer in writing that he or she
intends to do so or as soon as possible after the leave has begun
in cases where the employee must begin the leave prior to notifying
his or her employer. The Bill does not specify the amount of notice
that must be given to an employer.
We will keep you updated on the progress of this
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Unfortunately, reasonable accommodation for employees in the workplace continues to be the source of significant litigation and even today we continue to see outrageous examples of employers behaving badly.
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