Alberta's NDP government is currently holding consultations with the public as part of a sweeping review of the province's existing labour and employment legislation. Substantial changes are being proposed for both the Employment Standards Code and the Labour Relations Code, which, if passed, will have a significant impact on employers throughout Alberta.
Some of the changes being proposed with respect to the Employment Standards Code include: the introduction of new unpaid, job-protected leaves, decreased eligibility thresholds for existing unpaid, job-protected leaves, increasing the rate at which overtime may be banked, changes to the eligibility and calculation of overtime in the context of compressed work weeks, the introduction of additional employee rest periods, changes to the eligibility and calculation of general holiday pay, amendments to youth employment, the introduction of additional notice requirements in the context of group termination notices, and new enforcement tools to deal with non-compliant employers, including introduction of an administrative penalty system. The changes being proposed with respect to the Labour Relations Code are less clear, however appear to include the following areas: mandating the inclusion of the Rand formula in collective agreements, amending union certification processes, assessing existing dispute resolution options for intractable disputes and broadening the mandate of, and improving the powers, procedures and remedial options of, the Alberta Labour Relations Board.
Members of the public are invited to provide comments with respect to both pieces of legislation until April 18, 2017. Details can be found at work.alberta.ca/leg-review.