Federal government seeking to add more paid personal leave days

The Trudeau government is seeking to give federally regulated workers more paid personal leave days in a proposal that arrives as Ontario moves to cut workers’ time-off entitlements.

Federal budget legislation, if passed, would let workers take up to five days off each calendar year for reasons such as the care of relatives, children’s educations or to attend their own citizenship ceremonies.

The bill, introduced this week by the federal Liberals, says three of the days off would be with pay for workers who have had their jobs at least three straight months.

Read: Ontario government unveils new labour standards bill

Ottawa’s proposed labour amendments follow new legislation from Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government to eliminate an entitlement to two such days off with pay for workers under provincial jurisdiction. Most workers are under provincial rules.

The federal legislation is also proposing changes that will provide five days of paid leave for victims of family violence, unpaid leave for court or jury duty and a fourth week of annual vacation for employees who have at least 10 consecutive years of employment.

The changes would also eliminate minimum length of service requirements for when workers become eligible for general holiday pay, sick leave, maternity leave and parental leave.

Read: Will the return of Ontario’s sick note add complexities for employers?