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Newsletter – February 2024


Licensing Requirements for Temporary Help Agencies and Recruiters Beginning on July 1, 2024

New legislation will make it illegal for employers to use unlicensed businesses for staffing as of July 1, 2024. This means that temporary help agencies and recruiters must be licensed and need to undergo a background check.

The government has said these agencies will be subject to “massive fines” up to $50,000 or a “lifetime ban on operating in Ontario” if they break the rules.

Agencies that apply for a licence and are refused will have 30 days to cease operation. Licences will need to be renewed each year.

Learn more 


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Case Study: Alberta Health Services vs. Johnston -A New Tort of Harassment in Alberta

In a groundbreaking decision, the Alberta Court of King’s Bench recognized the common law tort of harassment in the case of Alberta Health Services vs. Johnston. This marked a significant departure from the stance taken by other Canadian provinces, including Ontario, and has potential implications for the legal landscape concerning harassment. The case offers numerous valuable takeaways and insights for employers. Delve into our comprehensive case study, meticulously prepared by our experts, to gain key insights and a thorough understanding of the implications arising from this precedent-setting decision.


Amendments to the Termination Provisions of the Canada Labour Code are Coming into Effect on February 1, 2024

Amendments are being made to the Canada Labour Code to change how much notice of employment termination employers are required to give to employees in federally regulated workplaces.

The amendments to termination of employment will require employers to provide workers with a notice of termination based on the length of their continuous employment.


Between three months and three years of continuous employment, two weeks’ notice is required, which is unchanged by the amendments. However, starting in 2024, once an employee has completed three years of continuous employment, the notice period increases to three weeks. Then, the notice period increases by one week for each additional year of work, up to a maximum of eight weeks

Instead of notice, employers can provide termination pay equivalent to the wages an employee would have earned during the notice period or a combination of notice and pay in lieu.

These changes are coming into effect on February 1, 2024.

In addition, effective February 1, 2024, employers will be required to provide employees with a statement of benefits at the time of termination of employment that details their:

  • wages
  • vacation pay
  • severance pay, and
  • any other benefits and pay arising from their employment

Read more


Key CRA Tax Updates Impacting Canadian Businesses in 2024

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has announced several key changes affecting business taxes in 2024. These include modifications to the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) with new contribution rates and T4 reporting obligations.

Additionally, mandatory electronic filing thresholds for certain information returns, electronic filing requirements for GST/HST registrants, and new reporting requirements for the Canadian Dental Care Plan have been introduced. The government has also introduced a new administrative policy regarding the province of employment (POE) for remote work agreements.

The revised CRA regulations took effect on January 1, 2024. Check in with your payroll administrator or bookkeeper regarding these changes.

Click here to learn more.


Dental Care Expenses Have Changed

This tax season, employers are required to include information about dental care benefits offered to employees on T4 or T4A slips. The reporting obligation, effective from the 2023 tax year onward, mandates the disclosure of whether, on December 31 of the relevant taxation year, a payee or any family members were eligible for dental insurance or any form of dental coverage due to current or past employment.

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) emphasized the mandatory nature of this requirement and warned that failure to report could lead to financial penalties. To facilitate compliance, the CRA introduced new boxes on the T4 and T4A forms, such as Box 45 for Employer-offered Dental Benefits on the T4 and Box 015 for Payer-offered Dental Benefits on the T4A (mandatory if an amount is reported in Box 016, Pension or Superannuation). The CRA may reject slips without this information.


The Registered Retirement Savings Plan Contribution Limit Has Changed

There is a new registered retirement savings plan contribution limit put in place by the Canada Revenue Agency for 2024. It’s now $31,560, and that’s an increase from the contribution limit in 2023. While the limit in 2024 is still 18% of the previous year’s income, like it was last year, the dollar amount for the maximum RRSP contribution has increased from $30,780 to $31,560. Please keep this change in mind if you are offering an RRSP Matching Program to your employees.

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HSR Training Reimbursement Deadline March 31!

In workplaces with six to 19 employees, having a Health and Safety Representative (HSR) is essential for supporting workplace health and safety.

Small businesses in Ontario have the opportunity to apply for reimbursement of HSR training costs through the Ontario Small Business Health and Safety Training program. Act fast, as this program concludes on March 31, 2024.

To qualify for reimbursement, employers must ensure their HSR employees complete training and acquire a certificate of completion by 5:00 p.m. on March 31. The reimbursement application deadline is July 15, 2024, until 11:59 p.m.

Learn more

Mass Termination: Updated Form 1 (Notice of Termination of Employment) is Now Available

Due to recent amendments to the mass termination regulations outlined in the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA), modifications have been made to Form 1 (Notice of Termination of Employment).

Download updated Form 1

Pay Increases for Early Childhood Educators

Ontario is boosting the minimum wage of early childhood educators in most licensed child-care centres to $23.86 an hour.

The change is part of a provincial strategy meant to retain staff in the sector as Ontario works towards establishing $10-a-day child care.

After 2024, the wage floor will increase by $1, up to $25.86 in 2026.

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Faster Licensing for International Teachers

The Ontario government is requiring the Ontario College of Teachers to decide within 60 days of an application whether to accept an internationally trained teacher. The goal is to encourage faster hiring during a time when staff retention is challenging.

The province’s Better Schools and Student Outcomes Act, which streamlines processes for building schools on shared-use sites and disposing of surplus school board property, goes into effect in the new year.

Changes for the Tow Truck Industry

As of Jan. 1, the province will become responsible for certifying tow operators, drivers, and vehicle storage operators.

As part of the certification, individuals will have to meet certain training, insurance, and vehicle safety standards, as well as get a criminal record check. It also means that these individuals will be exempt from municipal business licensing by-laws.

New customer rights will also be introduced that include providing consent to tow, choosing where a vehicle is towed, and rules surrounding accessing and paying for a vehicle.


BC Court of Appeal Confirms Dishonesty Constitutes Cause for Dismissal

In the case of Mechalchuk vs. Galaxy Motors (1990) Ltd., the British Columbia Court of Appeal affirmed the dismissal of the President of Operations of Galaxy Motors Ltd. for cause. The senior employee, earning an annual income between $750,000 and $1,000,000, had submitted personal meals as business expenses during a work trip, totaling approximately $250.

Despite these being personal expenses, he submitted receipts for reimbursement as business expenses, falsely including the names of absent employees on the receipts. When confronted by the company about this and other questionable expense claims, the employee remained dishonest, leading to his termination for cause.

The court considered several factors, including the employee’s high level of authority and trust, the company’s policy regarding falsifying records, the employee’s awareness of the misconduct, and his continued dishonesty when confronted.


Despite the relatively small amounts involved, the court found that the employee’s actions struck at the core of the employer-employee relationship, justifying the loss of faith and trust by the company.

Read more


Saskatchewan Company Fined $46,000 After Workplace Injury

A Saskatchewan employer has been fined a total of $46,000 after one of its workers suffered a serious foot injury on July 10, 2021. The incident occurred near Regina Beach when the worker’s foot became entangled in a horizontal auger system.

Earlier this year, the employer pleaded guilty in Regina Provincial Court to a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, 2020. The company was fined for failing to provide and maintain a safe working environment, resulting in a serious injury to a worker, as per clause 3-1 (a) of the regulations.

The court imposed a fine of $32,857.14, along with a surcharge of $13,142.86. This comes after a previous fine of $150,000 imposed on another Saskatchewan-based company for injuries sustained by a worker attempting to diagnose a leaking hydraulic line near Kisbey village.



Province Announces New Minimum Wage

Starting on April 1, 2024, minimum wage earners in Nova Scotia will receive a slight pay increase as the provincial government raises the base pay rate to $15.20 per hour, up from the current rate of $15. This adjustment follows the formula recommended by
the Minimum Wage Review Committee, with equal representation from both employees and employers.

The move aligns with similar minimum wage increases in other Canadian provinces and territories, such as New Brunswick, British Columbia, and Prince Edward Island, with Nunavut currently holding the highest minimum wage in Canada at $19 per hour as of January 1.


P.E.I.’s Minimum Wage Will Increase Twice in 2024

In a recent development, workers on the island can anticipate not one but two minimum wage increases in the year 2024. The provincial government has officially approved the annual recommendations presented by the Employment Standards Board, paving the way for a phased wage hike.

Effective April 1, 2024, the minimum wage will see its first uptick, rising from $15 to $15.40 per hour. Building on this initial increase, island workers can expect a second raise on October 1, 2024, bringing the minimum wage to $16 per hour..



Nunavut Minimum Wage Rises to $19 an Hour

Nunavut’s minimum wage increased from $16 to $19 per hour on January 1, 2024, marking an 18 per cent raise. The territorial government announced the move to address inflation and the high cost of living, making Nunavut’s minimum wage the highest in Canada, surpassing the second-highest in Yukon by over $2. The decision to raise the minimum wage followed a survey, consultations with stakeholders, and a financial and statistical review.



Alberta: $15 per hour, effective October 1, 2018. Students under 18 years of age who work less than 28 hours per week earn a minimum wage of $13.00 per hour. Salespersons (including land agents and certain professionals) earn a minimum wage of $598 per week. Domestic employees (living in their employer’s home) earn a minimum wage of $2,848 per month.

British Columbia: $16.75 per hour, effective June 1, 2023. For live-in camp leaders the daily rate for each day or part day worked is $133.69. For live-in home support workers the current daily rate is $124.73 per day or part day worked. The minimum wage for resident caretakers is a monthly wage based on the number of suites in the building: $1002.53 per month plus $40.17 for each suite for a building with 9 to 60 residential suites / $3414.85 per month for a building with 61 or more residential suites.

Federal Minimum Wage: $16.65 per hour, effective April 1, 2023.

Manitoba: $15.30 per hour, effective Oct. 1, 2023.

New Brunswick: $14.75 per hour, effective April 1, 2023.

Newfoundland and Labrador: $15 per hour, effective Oct. 1, 2023. Will increase to $15.60 ($0.60 increase), effective April 1, 2024

Northwest Territories: $16.05 per hour, effective Sep. 1, 2023.

Nova Scotia: $15 per hour, effective Oct. 1, 2023. The wage will go up to $15.20 on April 1, 2024.

Nunavut: $19 per hour, effective January 1, 2024.

Ontario: $16.55, effective October 1, 2023. The special minimum wage rates are as follows:

  • $15.60 per hour for students under the age of 18 who work 28 hours a week or less when school is in session or work during a school break or summer holidays.
  • $18.20 per hour for homeworkers (those who do paid work out of their own homes for employers).
  • Hunting, fishing, and wilderness guides earn $82.85 per day when working less than five consecutive hours in a day and $165.75 per day when working five or more hours in a day.

Prince Edward Island: $15 per hour, effective Oct. 1, 2023. The wage will increase twice in 2024, from $15 to $15.40 per hour on April 1 and from $15.40 to $16 per hour on October 1.

Quebec: $15.25 per hour, effective May 1, 2023.

Saskatchewan: $14 per hour, effective Oct. 1, 2023. The wage will increase to $15 per hour on Oct. 1, 2024.

Yukon: $16.77 per hour, effective April 1, 2023. The wage will increase to $17.59 per hour on April 1, 2024.


List of Provincial, Territorial, and Federal Statutory Holidays 2024

As a new year begins, HR professionals everywhere are diving into their annual Google search for Canadian statutory holidays in 2024! Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
We’ve prepared a comprehensive list of holidays tailored for both federally regulated and provincially regulated employers.


Navigating Cold Stress: Working Outdoors in Canada

Extreme cold is one of the most challenging weather conditions in Canada, particularly for individuals who work outside. People who are not properly protected from intense cold run a serious danger of developing cold stress, a condition brought on by exposure to the cold. This article explores what constitutes cold stress, its effects, and preventive measures to ensure the well-being of outdoor workers across the country.


For Ontario employers, what is the biggest challenge you face in achieving AODA compliance this year?
  • Budget constraints 36% 36%
  • Resistance from employees 36% 36%
  • Complexity of the process 21% 21%
  • Others (Comment Below) 7% 7%


When do the licensing requirements for temporary help agencies and recruiters begin in Ontario?

  • February 1, 2024
  • March 18, 2024
  • July 23, 2024
  • July 1, 2024


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Derek Spooner

Executive Director
Scarborough Arts

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