Bill 284: COVID-19 Putting Workers First Act, 2021

by Nathan Couvillon

General

On April 29, 2021 Bill 284 was accepted through Royal Assent. The key components of this bill are effective from April 19, 2021 until September 25, 2021, where employees are entitled up to 3 days of “Paid Infectious Disease Emergency Leave” related to COVID-19 if they are:

  • Going for a COVID-19 test
  • Staying home awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test
  • Being sick with COVID-19
  • Going to get vaccinated.
  • Experiencing a side effect from a COVID-19 vaccination
  • Having been advised to self-isolate due to COVID-19 by an employer, medical practitioner, or other specified authority.
  • Providing care or support to certain relatives for COVID-19 related reasons, such as when they are:
    • sick with COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19
    • self-isolating due to COVID-19 on the advice of a medical practitioner or other specified authority

Employee Eligibility

The Employee(s) must be covered under the Employment Standards Act (ESA). A doctor’s (or nurse practitioner) certificate is not required. Employees are not eligible if they are claiming the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB).

Employer Reimbursement

The Employer will pay employee as per common practice for the period of up to 3 days which were taken off as Paid Infectious Disease Emergency Leave. Employers are eligible for reimbursement of up to $200.00 per employee per day taken. Reimbursement claims are submitted via an application process, to the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) within 120 days of paying the employee. This is not and will not be funded as a WSIB program. Details on the exact application process have been released yet.

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