New year, new rules for employers in trucking

A new year means new rules for employers in trucking and logistics. Trucking HR Canada has compiled a list of regulatory and policy changes that may affect your workplace in 2023, with links to various resources and tools to help. Here’s what you should know.

Bill C-3: Paid medical leave

Under Bill C-3, employees can now receive up to 10 days of paid medical leave per calendar year and a leave of absence of up to eight weeks in the event of the death of a child or the loss of an unborn child.

The number of days of paid leave depends on the length of employment. Employees are entitled to three days after 30 days of continuous employment and one additional day of paid leave per month to a maximum of 10 days per year. Unused days can carry over to the next calendar year, but the maximum of 10 days of paid medical leave still applies.

There are numerous requirements for employers to know and follow, including establishing a system for tracking medical leaves. Not sure where to start? Click here to connect to a range of THRC resources, including policy templates, best practices, and more.

EI sickness benefits extended

The length of employment insurance (EI) sickness benefits has been extended from 15 to 26 weeks under the Canada Labour Code, and the maximum length of unpaid medical leave has been increased from 17 to 27 weeks. 

Minimum wage increases

Several provinces will increase their minimum hourly wage in 2023:

  • Nova Scotia will raise the minimum wage by 70 cents to $14.30 on April 1 and another 35 cents to $14.65 on Oct. 1.
  • Manitoba will raise the minimum wage by 65 cents to $14.15 on April 1. The province said it would raise it to $15 on Oct. 1.
  • Saskatchewan will raise the minimum wage to $14 from $13 effective Oct. 1.
  • Prince Edward Island raised its minimum wage by 80 cents to $14.50 on Jan. 1. It will increase another 50 cents to $15 on Oct. 1.
  • Newfoundland and Labrador will increase the minimum wage by 80 cents to $14.50 on April 1. It will increase another 50 cents to $15 on Oct. 1.

Workplace harassment and violence

Bill C-65 came into force on Jan. 1, 2021, compelling federally regulated employers to follow specific procedures for investigating, recording, reporting, and preventing workplace harassment and violence (WPHV). Here’s a quick refresher: 

  • All new hires must take WPHV training within three months of their start date.
  • Employers must conduct a workplace assessment to identify risks of harassment and violence, then implement a plan to mitigate these risks.
  • Employers must create a workplace harassment and violence policy to be reviewed and updated every three years and renew all training every three years.
  • Employers must appoint and train a “designated recipient” of all complaints related to workplace harassment and violence. This person should not be a supervisor or a manager. Complaints should be resolved within one year of the date on which the designated recipient receives notice of the incident.
  • Employers must also provide a report to the Minister by March 1, detailing the occurrences of workplace harassment and violence from the previous calendar year.

See our detailed guide to the WPHV regulations here.

Pay Equity Act

The Pay Equity Act came into force on Aug. 31, 2021, and requires federally regulated workplaces with 10 or more employees to provide equal pay for work of equal value.

Points to note:

  • Compensation packages must be equitable and comply with the Act. Depending on the employer’s size, this may involve establishing a pay equity committee.
  • Employers with 10 or more employees in the year before the Act came into force must develop a pay equity plan by Aug. 31, 2024. Employers that came to employ 10 or more employees at any point after the Act came into force will be subject to the Act on Jan. 1 of the following year, and will have three years to implement their pay equity plan.
  • Once a pay equity plan is established, employers must increase compensation for predominantly female job classes where the pay is less than their male counterparts.

Need help? THRC is hosting a webinar series on the Pay Equity Act this month.  Click here to learn more: Register now.

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Bill C-5 came into force on Aug. 3, 2021, and provides for the annual observance by the federal government and federally regulated employers of a new statutory holiday on Sept. 30, the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

Source deductions for 2023

Canadians can expect higher Canada Pension Plan and Employment Insurance deductions this year. The CPP contribution rate is 5.95% (11.9% for self-employed Canadians), with an estimated maximum contribution of $3,701. In Quebec, the QPP contribution rate is 6.4%, with a maximum of $4,038.

EI premiums are rising, too, with a federal contribution rate for employees of 1.63% to a maximum of $1,002.45. In Quebec, the 2023 contribution rate is 1.27% up to $781.

For trucking and logistics firms, the start of 2023 brings new challenges that require smart, dedicated, trained, and equipped people at every level of the organization.  Reach out to today to learn more about how we can help make sure you’re meeting your obligations as employers during the year ahead.