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On January 1, 2018, the Alberta Government passed Bill 17: The Fair and Family-Friendly Workplaces Act. With a new administrative penalty system coming (details of the system will become public later this year), how will these changes impact your businesses and employees.
Here are some highlights:
Note: Overtime pay is not included in the calculation of average daily wage.
Example calculation of general holiday pay
An employee makes $20/hour. Their vacation pay is paid out on each cheque. In the 4 weeks (28 days) leading up to the July 1 holiday (between June 3 and June 30), they worked 141 hours.
The first step in calculating general holiday pay is to calculate average daily wage.
|Wages||Hours worked in previous 28 days x Hourly wage||141 Hours x $20/hr = $2820|
|Vacation pay||4% of wages||$2820 x 0.04 = $112.80|
|General holiday pay|
(from previous general holidays)*
|There were no general holidays|
between June 3 and June 30
|Average daily wage||5% of (Wages + Vacation pay|
+ General holiday pay)
|($2820 + $112.80 + $0)x .05 = $146.64|
Then we can calculate the total owed based on whether the employee works on the general holiday.
|If the employee doesn't work|
on the general holiday
|Average daily wage||$146.64|
|If the employee works on|
the general holiday
|(Hours worked x Hourly wage|
x 1.5)+ Average daily wage
(Hours worked x Hourly wage)
+ Paid day off at rate of average daily wage
|(8 hours x $20/hour x 1.5)+$146.64 = $386.64|
(8 hours x $20/hour)= $160
+ Day off at $146.64
Eligibility – Employees will be eligible for current (excluding reservists leave) and new leaves after 90 days, rather than one year.
NOTE: No changes are being made immediately. These changes will come into effect after the Ministry finishes consultations on the list of light work jobs and the definition of hazardous work. Upcoming changes will have no effect on youth activities such as 4-H, or branding parties, and won’t stop friends and neighbours from helping each other as they have done for generations.
The length of maternity leave is 16 weeks and the maximum length of parental leave is 62 weeks.
Employees are eligible for maternity or parental leave if they’ve been employed at least 90 days with the same employer.
Employees with less than 90 days of employment may still be granted leave. However, their employers aren’t required under employment standards legislation to grant them leave.
Employers can’t discriminate against, lay off or terminate an employee, or require them to resign, because of pregnancy or childbirth.
If both parents work for the same employer, the employer isn’t required to grant leave to both employees at the same time.
Length of leave
Birth mothers can take up to 16 consecutive weeks of unpaid maternity leave. The number of weeks of leave exceeds the Employment Insurance benefit length by one week in recognition of the waiting period. Employees should be aware of this before taking their leave.
Leave can start any time within the 13 weeks leading up to the estimated due date and no later than the date of birth.
If pregnancy interferes with the employee’s job performance during the 12 weeks before their due date, employers can require that the employee start maternity leave earlier by notifying the employee in writing.
Birth mothers must take at least 6 weeks after birth for health reasons, unless:
For more information, check out Alberta Employment Standards
A webinar to answer your questions:
To help you understand your obligations, we hosted a webinar with McLennan Ross - prominent employer labour lawyers.
Contact our Business Counselors with any outstanding questions.
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