The recently established Ford administration has announced new revisions will soon be implemented to the prior government’s amendments to the Employment Standards Act.[1] The apparent impetus for these pro-business changes was that the prior revisions were the cause of higher prices and the need to reduce staff.

Minimum Wage

The first to go will be the promised increases to the minimum wage. This will now be remain at $14 per hour and the planned increment to $15 will be eliminated. This $14 rate will, however, be tied to inflation beginning in the fall of 2020. The present government declined to roll back the wage increase to $14 as this would be “immensely unfair” to the workers.

Personal Emergency Leave

There will also be amendments to this issue as well. Under the present “new” law, employees are entitled to up to 10 personal emergency leave days annually, two of which are paid.

The “newer new” law will allow for up to three such days, all of which are unpaid. Three days are allowed for personal illness, two of these days will be for bereavement leave and three will be allocated for family responsibility. Unlike the prior new law, the newer new law will permit the employer to request a medical certificate attesting to an illness.

Same Rate of Pay

The recently enacted amendments allow for the same sum to be paid for part-time and casual staff as full-time employees. The apparent purpose was to prevent a part-time economy. This provision will also be scrapped. The law which mandates the same pay for male and female employees will remain.

Onus of Proof re Contract Worker

The prior law required the employer to prove that a worker is not an employee and rather a contract worker. This provision will be repealed.


As noted above the newer new law has been presented for first reading this week. More changes may yet follow.

Let Legal Advice be Your Guide

Whether you be employer or employee, it is important to be current on the dynamics of this seemingly ever changing law. Stay current. For advice on this issue from either side, contact the offices of Toronto employment lawyers Grosman Gale Fletcher Hopkins. We regularly advise workplace parties on a wide range of legal workplace issues. Contact us online or by phone at 416 364 9599 to schedule a consultation.


[1] By the Liberal government’s the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act. The new revisions are to be enacted by the Making Ontario Open for Business Act which recently was presented for first reading.