The Labour and Industrial Relations Office in Prince Edward Island is considering changes to the Employment Standards Act regarding unpaid leave for an employee whose child has died, disappeared, or has a critical illness.   The proposed changes are reflective of changes already made by the Federal government to the Canada Labour Code which applies only to federally regulated employers.   The two new leaves include:

Critically Ill Child Care Leave – As proposed, an employee would be required to provide information from a qualified medical practitioner confirming that the child has a critical illness and outlining the time period that the child will require care.  If the proposal is implemented the leave will be 37 weeks in total to be taken within a year time frame.

Crime-related Child Death or Disappearance Leave – This is also an unpaid leave for employees responding to the death or disappearance of their child where a result of a “probable criminal act”.  The employee could take up to 52 weeks (for a disappearance) or 104 weeks (for a death).  The parent would not be eligible for the leave where they are charged with the crime.

Both leaves are proposed as available if the employee has worked for the same employer for a 3 month period.  The child must be under 18 years for the parent to qualify.

The employer would be required to allow the employee to return to employment after either leave with the same pay and benefits.

Feedback is requested by contacting Faye M. Martin Manager, Labour and Industrial Relations Department of Environment, Labour and Justice Box 2000 Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8 Telephone: 902-368-5550 E-mail: fmmartin@gov.pe.ca.

Responses are requested by August 28, 2015.