Skip to Content


Former employer/prospective employer complied with PIPA in relation to information disclosed during reference check

Jurisdiction: - Alberta

In Orders P2006-006 and P2006-007, the Alberta Privacy Commissioner ruled that the former employer and the prospective employer had complied with the Alberta Personal Information Protection Act in relation to information disclosed during a reference check.

Report on PIPEDA issued by "Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics"

Topics: - PIPEDA - Privacy
Jurisdiction: - Alberta - Canada/Federal - Quebec

The federal Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics has issued its report/recommendations on PIPEDA for the statutory review process.

The summary of the report provides, in part:

This report does not advocate dramatic changes to PIPEDA at this time. Given that the full implementation of the Act did not come about until January 2004 (see Overview of the Act, below), the Committee is cognizant of the fact that not every aspect of its implementation has yet been fully realized. Thus, even though we heard arguments on numerous issues, we have addressed only those where we decided that comments are warranted at this time.  read more »

Criminal record check for new employees found to be reasonable given nature of retail sector

Jurisdiction: - Alberta
Sector: - Retail Trade

Union of Calgary Co-Operative Employees v. Calgary Co-operative Assn. Ltd. [2006] A.G.A.A. No. 17 (QL)

Ontario Abolishes Mandatory Retirement and BC and Saskatchewan Appear to Follow Soon

Effective December 12, 2006, mandatory retirement will no longer be generally permissible in Ontario, (as a result of amendments to the Ontario Human Rights Code). Employers will, however, still be allowed to enforce mandatory retirement polices if they can show that being younger than 65 (or another designated age) is a bona fide occupational requirement.

As reported in the media on December 2, 2006, Premier Campbell has announced that mandatory retirement in BC will also soon be abolished. Specifically, it is expected that the BC Human Rights Code will be amended in Spring 2007, with the result being that mandatory retirement policies will not be generally permissible in this province.

Similarly, on November 6, 2006 the Saskatchewan Government introduced Bill 9, which will amend the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code, with the result that mandatory retirement policies will not be generally permissible in that province if Bill 9 is enacted. However, the amendments would not come into force for one year after Royal Assent.

Mandatory retirement is already not generally permissible in Alberta, Manitoba, Quebec, PEI, Yukon, the NWT and Nunavut.

"Recreational Drug Use and Pre-Employment Drug Testing: Human Rights Legislation and New Challenges for Employers"

Jurisdiction: - Alberta - Ontario
Sector: - Oil & Gas

Lawyer Gary T. Clarke and articled student, Joana Thackeray, at Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP in Vancouver have written a paper entitled, "Recreational Drug Use and Pre-Employment Drug Testing: Human Rights Legislation and New Challenges for Employers".

The paper was published in Canadian Employment and Equality Rights, Vol. 7, Number 34, October 2006 and concludes with some concrete advice for employers who are looking to implement pre-employment drug testing.

Increase in Alberta's Minimum Wage Act

Topics: - Minimum Wage
Jurisdiction: - Alberta - Saskatchewan

Effective September 1, 2005, Alberta's minimum wage was increased from $5.90 to $7.00 an hour.

Historically having the lowest legislated minimum wage in the country, this 19% increase, the first since 1999, positions Alberta ahead of Saskatchewan and the Maritime Provinces for hourly pay. However, most Alberta employers pay more than the minimum wage to attract and retain employees: according to the Alberta government the average hourly wage in Alberta is $18.55 an hour.

"Video Surveillance and the Employment Relationship"

British Columbia labour arbitrator Robert B. Blasina prepared a paper entitled, "Video Surveillance and the Employment Relationship" for the Personal Information Protection Act Conference 2006 held in Calgary on April 26-27, 2006.

The paper addresses decisions of labour arbitrators and privacy commissioners in BC, Alberta and the federal sector.

Alberta and BC sign agreement to eliminate barriers to labour mobility between the two provinces

Jurisdiction: - Alberta - British Columbia

The BC government announced today that it has signed an agreement with Alberta that will eiminate barriers to labour mobility between the two provinces.

The agreement - the Alberta-British Columbia Trade, Investment, and Labour Mobility Agreement (TILMA) - also eliminates barriers to trade and investment.

The news release states that TILMA will "enhance labour mobility by recognizing occupational certifications of workers in both provinces".

The agreement commences April 1, 2007 and will include a transition period to April 2009 before the agreement comes into full effect to give both governments time to bring their measures into conformity.