Transportation Industry Employers, Don’t Miss Out on Employment and Social Development Canada’s Guidelines

Amendments to the Canada Labour Code (the “Code”), which came into force on September 1, 2019, have broad and serious implications for employers in the transportation industry. In our previous article, we provided an overview of changes to the Code, including changes to hours of work, leaves of absence and vacation. In this article, we focus on the recent Federal Government “IPG” (interpretations, policies, and guidelines) publications.

In particular, employers in the transportation industry must take note of 802-1-IPG-101 (“IPG 101”). IPG 101 is an IPG that provides guidance to employers for the period between the coming into force of amendments to the Code on September 1, 2019, and forthcoming hours of work regulations yet to be adopted (“Regulations”). (For clarity, this article does not discuss “hours of service” regulations for commercial drivers, and we refer you to our recent article on that subject.)

According to IPG 101, until the Regulations are in place, employers of particular job classes may “carry on business as usual” with respect to one or more of the new hours of work provisions. IPG 101 then provides a comprehensive chart outlining specific job classes and indicating whether each job class is exempt from a particular provision of the Code.

Specifically, the following provisions are included in IPG 101:

  • Breaks (Section 169.1)
  • Rest Periods (Section 169.2)
  • Notice of hours of work (Section 173.01)
  • Shift Changes (Section 173.1)

For an overview of the changes to these provisions, see our previous article, which describes them in more detail.

Employers in the following industries should consult IPG 101 to determine whether they employ persons whose job titles are captured:

  • Road transportation;
  • Rail;
  • Marine transportation;
  • Air transportation and airports; and
  • Couriers

IPG 101 states that once drafted, “the Regulations will either exempt classes of employees from certain hours of work provisions or will modify the provisions for the purpose of application to certain classes of employees”.

In addition to IPG 101, the government also published a variety of other IPGs which will be of interest to employers in the transportation industry. They include:

  • 802-1-IPG-091: Situation that the employer could not have reasonably foreseen – Exceptions (defines “situation that the employer could not have reasonably foreseen”, for the purposes of exempting employers from particular break, rest period, scheduling, and notice of shift change requirements);
  • 802-1-IPG-092: Imminent or serious threat - Exceptions - Canada Labour Code, Part III Division I (defines “imminent or serious threat” for the same purposes as 802-1-IPG-091);
  • 802-1-IPG-093: Threat of damage to or loss of property - Exceptions - Canada Labour Code, Part III - Division I (defines “threat of damage to or loss of property” for the same purposes as 802-1-IPG-091); and,
  • 802-1-IPG-094: Serious interference with the operation of the establishment - Exceptions - Canada Labour Code, Part III - Division I (defines “serious interference with the operation of the establishment” for the same purposes as 802-1-IPG-091)

Should you have any questions or require more information about these IPGs, their interpretation, or updates to the Code in general, please do not hesitate to contact Tim Lawson or Ben Aberant from McCarthy Tétrault’s Labour & Employment Group.

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