The Ontario Government has extended the maximum period of COVID-related temporary layoffs until January 1, 2022.

Pursuant to Ontario Regulation 228/20 (the “IDEL Regulation”), during the “COVID-19 period,” employees are deemed to be on a job-protected Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (“IDEL”) when their hours of work are temporarily reduced or eliminated by their employer for reasons related to COVID-19. The IDEL Regulation states that such reductions do not constitute constructive dismissal during the COVID-19 period.

While the COVID-19 period was previously set to expire on September 25, 2021, the government has amended the IDEL Regulation so that the COVID-19 period will now end on January 1, 2022. This program provides employees with up to three days of paid leave because of certain reasons related to COVID-19, such as being sick with COVID-19, going for a COVID-19 test, or going to get vaccinated.

Additionally, at the end of August, the government extended the operation of paid IDEL until December 31, 2021. This program provides employees with up to three days of paid leave because of certain reasons related to COVID-19. Eligible employers are entitled to be reimbursed for the amount of lDEL paid to their employees.