‘These leave provisions provide victims with the time, flexibility and economic security to get the support they choose’
Yukon workers who have been victims of domestic and sexualized violence now have access to paid and unpaid leave under the Employment Standards Act.
The government has passed Bill 10, which first received assent in November 2019. Rates of domestic violence in the Yukon are three times the national average. Also, the rates of sexualized violence in the province are higher than the national average.
“Domestic and sexualized violence can be experienced by people of any gender, background or circumstance. We know that this type of violence affects the victim and everyone around them,” says Richard Mostyn, minister of community services. “These leave provisions provide victims with the time, flexibility and economic security to get the support they choose. Safe and supported employees make for healthier workplaces in our communities.”
Yukon’s leave provides five days of paid leave and five days of unpaid leave that can be taken in increments. If required, the employee can take up to 15 unpaid weeks with the employer’s consent.
The paid short-term leave and unpaid long-term leave will be available to workers after 90 days of employment. Meanwhile, the unpaid short-term leave will be available immediately.
In October 2020, the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) announced it was working in partnership with the CREVAWC and a researcher at the University of Toronto to collect and analyze information on sexual harassment and violence in the workplace. The survey is funded by the government of Canada’s Workplace Harassment and Violence Prevention Fund.
Canadian employers lose $77.9 million annually because of direct and indirect impacts of domestic violence, according to the Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & Children (CREVAWC) at Western University.