The COVID-19 outbreak has instilled a considerable amount of fear and unrest among workers and employees all around the world. Most such employees have claimed to be feeling victimized and cornered as a greater corporate beast steals jobs and livelihoods right from under their noses. This is why it would help to seek legal advice and learn from the labour and employment laws bestowed in one’s the state or country. In order to help sate these exact demands, here are sound cautionary legal measures laid out by the best employment lawyer in Toronto with regard to employee setbacks in the precarious era of the COVID-19.
TERMINATION FOR CAUSE DUE TO COVID-19:
Termination for cause is a popular form of lay off when it comes to capital punishment and employment low. Conveniently, it is also the easiest. If you are facing termination for cause from your workplace, ensure that your employer has a ‘just’ cause for your removal. In this case, ‘just’ cause refers to misconduct, incompetent behaviour, neglect of duty, and so on. If you feel that you have exhibited none of these characteristics, there is no honest ‘just’ cause that could result in your termination- so rest easy but put up a fight. For instance, being infected by the COVID-19 is an unjust cause, yet faking your illness and restricting the progress of your workplace is bound to land you a termination.
“DECLARED EMERGENCY LEAVE”
According to the Best employment lawyer in Toronto, if you are facing a situation wherein you’re unable to go to work due to fear of infection (on your commute to work), rather than being infected itself- the law is on your side. Ontario’s legal commission offers a declared emergency leave that enables you to apply for a leave due to certain reasons related to an infectious disease. An employee can access the leave by notifying their overseer due to cause of-
- An order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act
- An order under theHealth Protection and Promotion Act.
- Need to provide care or assistance to a specific individual.
However, if you do not fall under the jurisdiction of these cases, one may remain ineligible to access the “DECLARED EMERGENCY LEAVE” and would have to report to work. If the employee still fails to go to work in the absence of the above-given conditions, it would be considered “willful neglect of duty”.
“INFECTIOUS DISEASE LEAVE”
Beginning from January 25, 2020, employees can sanction an Infectious Disease Emergency leave if he/she is personally affected by the COVID-19. One can apply for this leave only if the employee is already under medical investigation, supervision or treatment; if the employee is acting under an order issued by a medical officer of health or court; or if the employee has been instructed to quarantine or take isolation as a control measure issued by a public health official, and so on. This and other conditions allow for an employee to gain access to the infectious disease leave while experiencing COVID-19. A doctor’s note is not explicitly required to meet the conditions for this leave.
CARING FOR A FAMILY MEMBER
In many cases, employees require leave not due to any implications of COVID-19, but because they hold a responsibility towards a family member. The Best employment lawyer in Toronto specifies that it is possible for an employee to claim an unpaid job-protected Emergency Leave to care for a family member despite not being infected by the COVID-19.
REFUSAL TO WORK DUE TO FEAR OR COVID-19
While there are no standard-meeting solutions available for a concern wherein one refuses to work because of COVID-19, or arrives late- rather than being infected- this might have some undesired outcomes for the employee. According to the Best employment lawyers in Toronto, this situation grants admission for an employer to consider refusal to work as job abandonment- and job abandonment can be classified under a termination for just cause.
These are the solutions offered for the most common situations faced by employees in the face of the unpredictable COVID-19 outbreak. A massive amount of research and cautionary measures have been implemented to help protect jobs for the employees. If you still need more information regarding the same, you can also contact an employment lawyer in Toronto.