Archived News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

December 7, 2006

Comprehensive Changes to Employment Standards Code Passed by Manitoba Legislature

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Legislation to Include Three New, Unpaid Family Responsibility/Sick Days, New Protection for Children

Comprehensive changes to the Employment Standards Code in 30 years were passed today by the Manitoba legislature, Labour and Immigration Minister Nancy Allan has announced.
“The legislation represents the most significant changes to Manitoba’s labour laws in 30 years and better reflects the realities of today’s workplaces,” said Allan. “The changes include three new unpaid days for illness or to attend to family responsibilities and three new unpaid bereavement days, as well as new protection for children working alone.”
Highlights of the proposed legislative changes include:
·         clear criteria governing the exclusion of managers from hours of work and overtime provisions;
·         exemptions from hours of work and overtime for employees who earn a minimum annual amount and exercise substantial control over their work schedule;
·         three new unpaid days for illness or to attend to family responsibilities and three new unpaid bereavement days;
·         improved statutory holiday pay provisions for part-time workers;
·         new graduated termination notice rules based on employees’ years of service;
·         guaranteeing employees who report for work minimum pay of three hours or pay for the regularly scheduled shift, whichever is less;
·         new measures to promote compliance with the legislation including fines for repeat offenders;
·         streamlining the process for obtaining averaging permits and hours of work variances;
·         new protections for children including specific restrictions on hours of work for those under 16 years of age and prohibiting those under 18 from working alone at night;
·         limiting the liability of company directors in cases of bankruptcy or closure; and
·         improving the ability to recover earned wages.
The government also intends to act upon the regulatory amendments proposed by the Labour Management Review Committee, highlights of which include:
·         provisions to prevent deductions from pay where there is no direct benefit to the worker,
·         expanding the definition of a family member to qualify for various statutory leaves,
·         improving overtime pay provisions for incentive-based workers,
·         improved coverage for domestic workers and live-in nannies, and
·         prohibiting employment of those under the age of 18 in higher-risk industries.
“These changes better reflect the needs of today’s workers and employers and we are pleased that the consensus changes have been passed,” concluded Allan.
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