Bill 31 2016
An Act to amend the Employment Standards Act, 2000 to entitle an employee whose child has died to a leave of absence
The journey bereaved parents take after suffering the death of their child is a long and winding road. Grieving is hard work for both the mind and body. Parents may feel isolated and unable to deal with everyday life. Balancing work and grief can be overwhelming for parents; returning to work while still in the initial shock of their child's death may add many layers to their grief.
To help these parents return to their communities productive and engaged, it is critical to ensure they have time to grieve.
Therefore, Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Ontario, enacts as follows:
1. The Employment Standards Act, 2000 is amended by adding the following section:
Child Death Leave
Death of child leave
49.4.1 (1) In this section,
"child" means a child, step-child or foster child who is under 18 years of age; ("enfant")
"week" means a period of seven consecutive days beginning on Sunday and ending on Saturday. ("semaine")
Entitlement to leave - death of child
(2) An employee who has been employed by his or her employer for at least six consecutive months is entitled to a leave of absence without pay of up to 52 weeks if a child of the employee dies in a circumstance other than one in which subsection 49.5 (2) applies.
(3) An employee is not entitled to a leave of absence under this section if the employee is charged with a crime in relation to the death of the child.
(4) An employee may take a leave under this section only in a single period.
(5) An employee may take a leave under subsection (2) only during the 52-week period that begins in the week the child dies.
Total amount of leave - death of child
(6) The total amount of leave that may be taken by one or more employees under this section in respect of a death, or deaths that are the result of the same event is 52 weeks.
(7) An employee who wishes to take a leave under this section shall advise his or her employer in writing that he or she will be doing so and shall provide the employer with a written plan that indicates the weeks in which he or she will take the leave.
(8) If an employee must begin a leave under this section before advising the employer, the employee shall advise the employer of the leave in writing as soon as possible after beginning it and shall provide the employer with a written plan that indicates the weeks in which he or she will take the leave.
Same - change in employee's plan
(9) An employee may take a leave at a time other than that indicated in the plan provided under subsection (7) or (8) if the change to the time of the leave meets the requirements of this section and,
(a) the employee requests permission from the employer to do so in writing and the employer grants permission in writing; or
(b) the employee provides the employer with four weeks written notice before the change is to take place.
(10) An employer may require an employee who takes a leave under this section to provide evidence reasonable in the circumstances of the employee's entitlement to the leave.
Leave under ss. 49.1, 49.3, 49.4, 49.5 (3) and 50
(11) An employee's entitlement to leave under this section is in addition to any entitlement to leave under sections 49.1, 49.3 and 49.4, subsection 49.5 (3) and section 50.
2. This Act comes into force on the day it receives Royal Assent.
3. The short title of this Act is Jonathan's Law (Employee Leave of Absence When Child Dies), 2016.
The Bill amends the Employment Standards Act, 2000 to provide that an employee who has been employed by his or her employer for at least six consecutive months is entitled to a leave of absence without pay of up to 52 weeks if a child of the employee dies.