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New rules for Ontario companies laying off remote jobs

It is the Government of Ontario offering an update labor legislation that would give remote workers the right to receive layoff notices.

The proposed changes, announced on Monday, would allow telecommuters to be entitled to the same eight weeks’ minimum notice of termination or pay as office workers when mass layoffs occur.

“Whether or not you go to work every day should not determine what you owe. “No billion-dollar company should treat its remote workers as second class,” Ontario Labor Minister Monte McNaughton said Monday.

Currently in Ontario Employment Standards Act (ESA) applies when 50 or more employees in an “establishment” are made redundant in a four-week period and entitles them to eight, 12 or 16 weeks’ notice of mass redundancies.

When it comes to mass layoffs, telecommuters are not protected because they are not recognized under Ontario’s current labor laws.

As a result, companies may split layoffs between remote and office workers to avoid meeting the definition of mass layoffs. For example, letting go of 40 office workers and another 20 telecommuters.

If passed, the new law would address and close this existing loophole, giving telecommuters the same protections as office workers in the event of mass layoffs.

The proposal would expand the definition of “establishment” to include remote workers, thereby giving them the right to receive the same advance notice.

The proposed legislation is part of the Ontario government Law for workerswhich has helped employees disconnect from the office and forced employers to inform their staff of how they are being electronically monitored.

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