After countless advocacy letters, consultations, submissions and meetings with government officials, we can finally proclaim victory on repealing most of Bill 6.
Bill 6 was labour legislation disguised as farm safety that forced agri-businesses, farms and ranches to comply with urban workplace legislation that did not reflect the unique realities of running a farm or ranch in Alberta.
CFIB was successful on getting the previous government to make some changes to Bill 6 including, exempting family farms from WCB coverage and some exemptions on employment standards.
CFIB can now claim victory with the passage of the Farm Freedom and Safety Act!
The new legislation repeals most of Bill 6 and better reflects the realities of operating a farm or ranch in Alberta. Changes include:
- Reduced red tape for farmers and ranchers.
- Recognizing farm and ranch work is done outside of the typical 9-5 workday.
- Allows employers to have options for workplace insurance (takes effect January 31, 2020):
- Farms and ranches with more than 5 waged, non-family employees will still be required to have workplace insurance, but will be able to choose which workplace insurance option works best for their operation (WCB or private).
- Reinstates the farm and ranch sector exemption from the Labour Relations Code (took effect November 20, 2019).
- Grants greater flexibility in meeting labour and employment standards (changes take effect on January 31, 2020):
- Farms and ranches with 5 or fewer employees, not including family members, and employees who work less than 6 months consecutively will be exempt from all employment standards.
- Farms and ranches with more than 5 waged, non-family employees will still be required to meet employment standards, with some exemptions.
- Includes nursery, greenhouse, mushroom and sod in the definition of “farms” and “ranches”
Your input through the Farm Freedom and Safety consultation helped inform and make government implement these changes. CFIB will continue to advocate for our agri-businesses members and ensure government understands their unique business.
As always, we want to hear from you! If there is anything specific you would like us to voice on your behalf, please reach out to us via email or call us at 1-866-444-9290.
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