'No one should lose their job for continuing to prioritize health and safety' during pandemic
Saskatchewan has amended its employment standards to ensure that employees have access to job-protected leaves during a public health emergency.
“No one should lose their job for continuing to prioritize health and safety during this public health emergency,” says Don Morgan, minister of labour relations and workplace safety.
The amendments remove the requirement of 13 consecutive weeks of employment with an employer before accessing sick leave, and the provision requiring a doctor’s note or certificate.
The province also introduced a new unpaid public health emergency leave that employees can access when:
- the World Health Organization has determined that there is a public health emergency and the province’s chief medical health officer has also issued an order that measures be taken to reduce the spread of a disease
- the province’s chief medical health officer has independently issued an order that measures be taken provincially to reduce the spread of a disease where it is believed there is sufficient risk of harm to citizens of the province
Almost half of small employers in Canada have reduced hours for staff while one-fifth have started temporary layoffs amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and some employers announced they are temporarily closing shop.