Balancing work and home life
Official title: Balancing work and home life – Effective September 1, 2019, know the fact
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Federal labour standards set employment conditions such as hours of work, payment of wages, overtimes rules, vacation and general holidays, leaves and rights on termination of employment for federally regulated workplaces*.
A balance between work life and home life is important. Everyone benefits when this balance is achieved. To get there, employees and employers need to work together.
As of September 1, 2019, federally regulated employers and their employees have more options to help them achieve work-life balance.
Right to request flexible work arrangements - New
The following provides a summary of what is in the legislation but as long as the employee and their employer agree, flexible work arrangements are possible at any time during employment.
- can request changes to the number of hours they work, their schedule and/or their work location
- are protected from reprisals, for example being fired, demoted, suspended, or disciplined, as a result of making this request
- must respond to the employee in writing within 30 days
- may modify or, for financial or operational concerns, refuse the request
Advance notice of schedules, shift changes and the right to refuse overtime - New
Employers must provide employees with:
- their work schedule, in writing, at least 96 hours before the first day of that schedule
- 24 hours’ notice, in writing, of a shift change
- may refuse to work any work period or shift in their schedule that starts within the 96-hour notice period.*
- May refuse to work overtime to address family responsibilities as long as they have taken reasonable steps to carry out these obligations by other means.**
**Important: There are exceptions. For example, an employer may require an employee to work if doing so is necessary to deal with a situation that the employer could not have reasonably foreseen and that could reasonably be expected to present an imminent or serious:
- threat to the life, health or safety of a person;
- threat of property loss or damage; or
- threat of serious interference with business operations.
Banking overtime - New
Employees may, with the written agreement from their employer, accumulate time off with pay for overtime worked at a rate of 1.5 hours banked for 1 overtime hour worked. For example 5 hours of overtime worked = 7.5 hours of time off with pay.
Annual vacations - New
Employees may, with the written agreement from their employertake their annual vacation in more than one period. For example, one week in June and one week in December. An employee may interrupt and postpone vacation leave to take another leave. For example, if an employee becomes sick during vacation.
For more on other improvements go to federal labour standards web page.
*A list of federally regulated workplaces can be found at Federally Regulated Businesses and Industries.
Learn more about your rights and obligations:
- Federal labour standards or contact the Labour Program
- 1-800-641-4049 Teletypewritter (TTY) 1-800-926-9105
- #LabourStandards @Labour_ESDC
- Annual vacations
- Hours of work
- Leave of absence
- Maternity-related reassignment and leave, maternity leave and parental leave
- Notice relating to the Canada Labour Code – Part III
- Summary of part III of the Canada Labour Code
- What we heard: Modernizing federal labour standards
- What we heard: Workplace harassment and violence prevention regulations
- Who is covered
- Do federal labour standards apply to you?
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