The Ontario Ministry of Labour (MOL) recently issued a statement that it will be targeting temporary help agencies for proactive inspection blitzes from June 2012, until the end of August. The MOL noted that about 735,000 people in Ontario work in temporary jobs and that many of them are employed by temp agencies.
The focus of these random inspections will be to ensure that certain identified sectors are in compliance with the various aspects of the Employment Standards Act, including the following:
- Minimum standards (minimum wage, hours of work, eating periods, vacation time, overtime pay, public holiday pay and statutory leaves of absence
- Requirement to post employment standards information
- Requirement to provide mandatory information to employees
- Requirement to refrain from charging certain fees to employees
- Obligation to maintain accurate records for prescribed period of time
If an employer is found to be in violation of any element of the legislation, the MOL has the power to take enforcement action to ensure their organization becomes compliant. Penalties for identified non-compliances could include tickets ranging from hundreds of dollars or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in Court orders. Directors of Corporations can also be held personally liable for their Company’s violations and even jailed. The MOL maintains that these blitzes assist them in educating employers and protecting vulnerable workers. Employers should consider conducting an internal audit to ensure their organization is in compliance with all applicable employment standards requirements before they receive a visit from an MOL inspector.
This blog is provided as information and a summary of workplace legal issues.
This information is not intended as legal advice.