Canadian Employment - Canada FAQ

The current employment standards legislation in Canada is a result of a long process of negotiation which involved employers, unions, and governmental officials. The documentation that reflects all these important achievements determines the legislative conditions at the federal, provincial and territorial level. As a matter of fact, 90 percent of the Canadian employees work in a provincially or territorially regulated business enterprises or industries, and the remaining 10 percent are covered by the federal labor laws.

However, the employment standard legislation in the country sets out fundamental conditions, such as: the minimum allowed age for employment, minimum wages, hours of work permitted, the weekly rest-day, annual vacations for employees holding various contracts, parental leave for both parents, overtime pay, individual and group employment terminations of contract, and other regulations. The labor laws are codified as to safeguard the rights of workers. The employment standards legislation also encourages the proactive relationships between employers and their employees as a constructive element of a positive workplace environment. Such type of environment contributes substantially to higher satisfaction with the workplace

Although all Canadians are given the official right to work in a safe and healthy environment, deaths caused by work-related diseases or injuries total an average of 1,000 per year. There are some basic documents that aim at lessening and preventing work-related accidents in organizations and companies under the federal, provincial, and territorial jurisdiction. At the same time, both managers and employees play a key role in attaining this goal. Most of these documents contain the following elements:

Canada Employment* Information about how to act in case of an accident and how to protect oneself from work-related injuries;
* Compliance policy which specifies measures to ensure that both employers and employees perform their responsibilities in an appropriate manner;
* Definition of the duties of health and safety officers;
* Information on the role of workplace health and safety representatives and organizations;
* Information about recent amendments to health and safety legislation.

Despite all measures and everyone's best efforts, an accident can happen in every company (this is especially true for the construction business and work in production facilities). So, in the event of a work-related injury or occupational disease, the Workers' Compensation programs help employees deal with the subsequent financial hardships. Most of these programs are administered by the provincial and territorial governments in Canada, while the Labor Program is designed to protect employees of the federal government who work both, on the territory of Canada and abroad.

A number of recent scientific studies has proven that good relations at the workplace are as important for job satisfaction as wage and other benefits, and sometimes even more. According to the experts, good relations within the company are a vital factor in what is considered to be a good job. As a result, various initiatives, such as programs, services and measures have been taken as an essential element of the management-labor cooperative efforts. They are mainly focused on improving and sustaining good relations between businesses and their employees.

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