Overview of the parts of the Canada Labour Code and how they apply to your workplace

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

The Canada Labour Code (the Code) is an Act of the Parliament of Canada that defines the rights and responsibilities of workers and employers in federally regulated workplaces and sets out federal labour law.

As a regulator, the Labour Program at Employment and Social Development Canada is responsible for protecting the rights and well-being of both workers and employers in those workplaces.

Currently, the Code is divided into 3 parts.

On this page

Part I: Industrial Relations

Part I of the Code governs workplace relations and collective bargaining between unions and employers. This part contains provisions related to dispute resolution, strikes and lockouts. It outlines the labour relations rights and responsibilities of employers, trade unions and employees.

List of industries that must follow Part I (Industrial Relations) of the Code:

  • Air transportation, including airlines, airports, aerodromes and aircraft operations
  • Banks, including authorized foreign banks
  • Grain elevators, feed and seed mills, feed warehouses and grain-seed cleaning plants
  • First Nations Band Councils (including certain community services on reserve)
  • Most federal Crown corporations, for example, Canada Post Corporation
  • Port services, marine shipping, ferries, tunnels, canals, bridges and pipelines (oil and gas) that cross international or provincial borders
  • Radio and television broadcasting
  • Railways that cross provincial or international borders and some short-line railways
  • Road transportation services, including trucks and buses, that cross provincial or international borders
  • Telecommunications, for example, telephone, internet, telegraph and cable systems
  • Uranium mining and processing and atomic energy
  • Any business that is vital, essential or integral to the operation of one of the above activities
  • Private-sector firms and municipalities in Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut

For more information visit: Federal labour relations

Part II: Occupational Health and Safety

Part II of the Code establishes provisions to prevent workplace-related accidents and injuries, including occupational diseases. Under Part II, the employer has a general obligation to protect the health and safety of employees while at work, as well as non-employees (such as contractors or members of the public) who are granted access to the workplace. It also places obligations on employees and the health and safety committee or its representatives to help prevent occupational-related injuries and diseases.

List of industries that must follow Part II (Occupational Health and Safety) of the Code:

  • Air transportation, including airlines, airports, aerodromes and aircraft operations
  • Banks, including authorized foreign banks
  • Grain elevators, feed and seed mills, feed warehouses and grain-seed cleaning plants
  • First Nations Band Councils (including certain community services on reserve)
  • Most federal Crown corporations, for example, Canada Post Corporation
  • Port services, marine shipping, ferries, tunnels, canals, bridges and pipelines (oil and gas) that cross international or provincial borders
  • Radio and television broadcasting
  • Railways that cross provincial or international borders and some short-line railways
  • Road transportation services, including trucks and buses, that cross provincial or international borders
  • Telecommunications, for example, telephone, internet, telegraph and cable systems
  • Uranium mining and processing and atomic energy
  • Any business that is vital, essential or integral to the operation of one of the above activities
  • Federal public service
  • Parliament (for example, the Senate, the House of Commons and the Library of Parliament)

For more information:

Part III: Standard Hours, Wages, Vacations and Holidays

Part III of the Code establishes and protects workers’ rights to fair and equitable conditions of employment.

The provisions of the Code set labour standards for employment conditions by establishing minimum working conditions in the federally regulated private sector, such as hours of work, minimum wages, statutory holidays and annual vacations, as well as various types of leave. They also create a level playing field for employers by requiring all of them to meet these minimum entitlements.

List of industries that must follow Part III (Standard Hours, Wages, Vacations and Holidays) of the Code:

  • Air transportation, including airlines, airports, aerodromes and aircraft operations
  • Banks, including authorized foreign banks
  • Grain elevators, feed and seed mills, feed warehouses and grain-seed cleaning plants
  • First Nations Band Councils (including certain community services on reserve)
  • Most federal Crown corporations, for example, Canada Post Corporation
  • Port services, marine shipping, ferries, tunnels, canals, bridges and pipelines (oil and gas) that cross international or provincial borders
  • Radio and television broadcasting
  • Railways that cross provincial or international borders and some short-line railways
  • Road transportation services, including trucks and buses, that cross provincial or international borders
  • Telecommunications, for example, telephone, internet, telegraph and cable systems
  • Uranium mining and processing and atomic energy
  • Any business that is vital, essential or integral to the operation of one of the above activities

For more information:

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