Updates to the Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (IDEL)
Employees who were laid off or whose wages or hours were reduced because of reasons related to COVID-19 were placed on a job-protected Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (IDEL). Previously, the layoff provisions of IDEL would continue until the employee returns to regular hours, or six (6) weeks after the end of the declared State of Emergency. On September 4, 2020, the Ontario government announced the extension of IDEL for laid off employees to January 2, 2021.
Employees Still Laid Off
Employees who are still laid off after September 4, 2020, will continue to remain on the job-protected IDEL until January 2, 2021. The Employment Standards Act (ESA)’s regular rules around temporary layoff will resume on January 3, 2021, however this date is subject to change. We will keep you apprised of any changes.
The new IDEL extension announcement delays the requirement for employers to provide termination compensation to laid off employees until after January 2, 2021. This provides employers with the ability to keep the employment relationship active and allow time for their business to pick-up again.
Other COVID-19 Absences
As long as COVID-19 remains a designated infectious disease under the ESA, employees who cannot work due to one of the reasons listed in the statute related to COVID-19 will continue to be entitled to IDEL. On September 3, 2020, the Ontario government announced that IDEL is also extended to parents who feel it is unsafe to return their children to school in-person.
The information contained in this article does not constitute legal or other professional advice. This article is current as of September 8, 2020 and applies only to Ontario, Canada.
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