The Collective Agreement isn't the only set of rules pertaining to our workplace. Other legislation such as the Human Rights Code, the Employment Standards Act, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, and the Occupational Health and Safety Act also govern workplaces in Ontario. Find descriptions about each one below, along with links to the current laws and guides.
Ontario Human Rights Code
The Ontario Human Rights Code prohibits actions that discriminate against people based on protected grounds (race, sex, etc) in protected social areas (in our case employment). The act not only outlines what is unnacceptable, but also outlines an employer's duty to accommodate in where necessary.
Employment Standards Act (ESA)
The Ontario Employment Standards Act (ESA) sets out the rights and responsibilites of most employees and employers in Ontario. It covers a wide range of employment facets (minimum wage, hours of work, leaves, vacation, holidays, etc) for workplaces in the province. It provides the minimum standards, as our Collective Agreement provides a greater right or benefit in many some areas, and no employee can agree to waive or give up their minimum rights under the Act.
Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA)
The Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) sets out the rights and duties of all parties in the workplace (workers, supervisors, employers, etc), and has procedures for dealing with workplace hazards and enforcement as needed. Employers have the greatest responsibilites under the act to ensure workplace safety, however, all parties have a role in making sure the health and safety requirements are met in the workplace. The Act also has clear procedures for workers to refuse unsafe work, and how those concerns are resolved. It is everyone's responsibility to know their responsibiliites and rights under the act to keep themselves and their coworkers safe.
Workplace Safety and Insurance Act (WSIA)
The Workplace Safety and Insurance Act (WSIA) provides sets out the responsiblities for employees and employers in Ontario when it comes to workplace injuries and return to work. The WSIA governs the Workplace Safey and Insurance Board (WSIB), who members file workplace injury claims.
This isn't an exhaustive list by any means, and we welcome suggestions for additional links to help our members.