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BC Employment Standards Act

"Anti-Bullying Legislation"

Robyn Durling of the BC Human Rights Coalition prepared a paper on, "Anti-Bullying Legislation", for the Human Rights Conference (Continuing Legal Education Society of British Columbia) in November 2010.

British Columbia legislative assembly finance committee recommends increasing minimum wage

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

The British Columbia "Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services" is recommending that BC increase its minimum wage from the current $8/hour.

The recommendation was found in the "First Report on the Budget 2011 Consultations" which was made public on November 12, 2010. The committee is comprised of 10 MLAs and chaired by Liberal Party member John Les. The specific reccomendation is to "Increase the minimum wage in small increments with appropriate advance notice".

The BC Federation of Labour, among others, has been calling on the provincial government to increase the minimum wage for some time now. See this March 5, 2009 post and this January 5, 2010 post.

Employee on maternity leave was constructively dismissed when employer took steps to dissolve operations

In Lewis v. Terrace Tourism Society, 2010 BCCA 346, the majority of the BC Court of
Appeal found that the Executive Director ("ED") of the Tourism Terrace Society (the "Society") was constructively dismissed when the Society took steps to dissolve its operations while she was on maternity leave.


The ED commenced her employment with the Society in May 2004.

At the end of 2006, she started a maternity leave that was scheduled to run until January 2008. An interim ED was hired to replace her.

Two weeks after the ED commenced her maternity leave, the Society determined that it was in dire financial straits. It took several immediate steps to deal with the situation, including laying off the interim executive director and removing the ED's signing authority on its bank accounts.

A month later, the Society passed a "dissolution" resolution in which it voted to:  read more »

British Columbia's "Employment Law Conference 2010" (CLE)

As I noted in my post a few days ago, I presented a paper on The Law on Workplace Investigations: An Update on Key Developments on May 13, 2010 at the BC "Employment Law Conference 2010" Continuing Legal Education (CLE).

The other presenters on Day 1, and their topics, were:  read more »

Glowing Hearts Day: A new statutory holiday for British Columbia?

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia

Almost 6,000 people have signed Kathryn Holmes' petition for a new statutory holiday in British Columbia called "Glowing Hearts Day". Holmes seized on the idea as a permanent way to honour the spirit of the Olympics as she was walking home from the gold medal hockey game at Canada Hockey Place.    

Holmes is proposing that the holiday fall on the third Monday in February. This would allow BC to harmonize with other Canadian provinces that already have a statutory holiday on this date, including Alberta (Family Day), Saskatchewan (Family Day), Manitoba (Louis Riel Day), Ontario (Family Day) and PEI (Islander Day).

The BC government is not keen on the idea, however. The Province newspaper reported on Tuesday that the Ministry of Labour has stated that there is no interest in a February statutory holiday because of the cost implications. According to the Ministry, another day off - BC currently has nine holidays - would cost the province $270 million in lost productivity.  read more »

No just cause for dismissal but notice limited to that set out in the Associate Handbook

Jurisdiction: - British Columbia
Sector: - Retail Trade

Arasteh v. Best Buy Canada Ltd., 2010 BCSC 48

(Note: In a recent Saskatchewan case - Fox v. Silver Sage Housing Corporation, 2008 SKQB 321 - it was found that an employee was not bound by the termination provisions in a policy manual that had been introduced 13 years after he commenced employment.)