In May 2015, the Ontario Ministry of Labour launched public consultations on the broader issues affecting the workplace and how the current labour and employment law framework, as set out in two specific Acts (i.e. the Employment Standards Act, 2000 and the Labour Relations Act, 1995), addresses these trends and issues.
The IIAC focused its submission on the current Employment Standards Act and Regulations, specifically section 2(1) of Ontario Regulation 285/01. The Regulation expressly exempts certain professionals—for example, architects, lawyers, engineers and accountants—from provisions of the Act pertaining to hours of work, minimum wage, public holidays and vacation pay.
The exemption recognizes that certain professional roles (like those listed above) require significant independence in fulfilling their responsibilities and much greater flexibility in their hours of practice. They are generally well-paid roles, providing compensation and benefits well in excess of the minimum contemplated by the Provisions.
The Ontario Regulation currently does not exempt the highly-skilled and well-paid professionals in the financial services industry from the major employment standards, unlike the equivalent regulations in other large provinces (e.g. BC, Alberta, and Saskatchewan), as well as the Canada Labour Code.
The IIAC requested that Financial Services Professionals (including Investment Advisors; Investment/Portfolio Managers; Securities Traders; Research Analysts and Associates; and Analysts, Associates, Vice Presidents, Directors, Managing Directors, and Compliance Officers, who are not managers, in Investment and Corporate Banking) be exempt from certain provisions of the Act and Regulations in a manner similar to the exemptions that apply to other professionals in section 2(1) of Ontario Regulation 285/01.
More details are available in our submission. Please click here.