Amendments help out workers facing COVID-related absences
Saskatchewan has amended its employment standards to extend job protection to employees looking to access the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) and the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB).
The amendments will provide job protection for all employees who are absent from work due to illness, self-isolating or have an underlying health condition which makes them susceptible to COVID-19; or are providing care to a child or disabled family member.
It also covers those who are receiving or applying for the CRSB or CRCB.
“The amendments ensure employees that are accessing the new federal recovery benefits will have jobs to return to after taking leave due to a COVID illness or caring for a family member,” says Don Morgan, minister of labour relations and workplace safety.
Doctor’s notes and sick days
In March 2020, Saskatchewan also amended the Saskatchewan Employment Act to remove the requirement for a doctor’s note or certificate for employees, and the requirement for an employee to have worked 13 consecutive weeks with the employer prior to accessing sick leave. A new unpaid public health emergency leave was also created.
The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) has asked that employers discontinue requiring workers to provide sick notes to be allowed time off work amid the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
The act previously provides unpaid job protection for employees who are absent from work due to their own illness or injury for either 12 days or 12 weeks, depending on the severity of the illness.
Several parties have called for more paid sick days during the pandemic, including Ontario MPP Peggy Sattler.