Backgrounder - McGuinty government acts to provide military reservists with job-protected leave

    TORONTO, Dec. 3 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government has introduced
legislation, that, if passed, would provide job-protected leave for military
reservists. Such leaves would be available for reservists serving on certain
domestic operations, such as search and rescue operations or national
disasters such as flood relief or ice storms, as well as for international


    Military reservists are currently not protected by legislation to ensure
they can return to their civilian jobs or a comparable job with the same
employer when a tour of duty is completed. The proposed legislation seeks to
provide this protection.

    Requirements for Leave

    To qualify for the leave a reservist must have worked for their employer
for at least six consecutive months. All employers covered by the Employment
Standards Act, 2000, regardless of size, would be required to provide the
leave to eligible employees.
    Reservists would be entitled to a leave period necessary to engage in the
operation they are deployed to. In the case of international operations this
would include any pre-deployment or post-deployment activities required by the
Canadian Forces.
    The reservist would be required to provide reasonable notice, in writing,
before beginning and ending the leave, and may be required to provide proof of
service if requested by the employer.
    The proposed legislation would allow employers to postpone the
reservists' reinstatement for two weeks or one pay period, whichever is later.
    A reservist's employer would not have to pay the reservist while he or
she is on leave and would not be required to continue any pension or benefit
plan contributions for the duration of the leave. However, if the employer
chose to postpone the return date, the employer would be required to make
benefit contributions during this additional period of time.
    Reservists seniority and length of service credits would continue to
accumulate during the leave.

    Job Protection Upon Return

    Upon the reservist's return from leave, the employer would be required to
reinstate the reservist to the same position if it still exists, or to a
comparable position if it does not.
    The Ministry of Labour Employment Practices Branch would enforce the
proposed legislation in non-unionized workplaces with the same remedies for
violations as other leave provisions under the Employment Standards Act, 2000.
In unionized workplaces, enforcement would be under the applicable collective

    Disponible en français


For further information:

For further information: Media enquiries: Bruce Skeaff, Ministry of
Labour, (416) 326-7405

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